Much of South Asia ‘could be too hot to live’ by 2100: study

Written by The Frontier Post

NEW YORK (APP) – Climate change could result in much of Pakistan, India and Bangladesh becoming “too hot to live” by 2100, a recent study published in the Science Advances magazine has predicted.

The study titled Predicting Risks of Extreme Heat Waves in South Asia suggests that deadly heat waves towards the end of the 21st century in the densely-populated agricultural regions of South Asia would be above human survivability threshold, based on wet-bulb temperature (TW).

TW is defined as the temperature that an air parcel would attain if cooled at constant pressure by evaporating water within it until saturation.

Past climatology studies have been based on temperature projections alone. This one also considers humidity as well as the body’s ability to cool down in response.

The study presents several models that project risks from new types of extreme heat waves that are likely to hit South Asia hotspots.

The authors of the study led by former MIT research scientist Eun-Soon Im, now an assistant professor at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, identify areas where climate change is likely to severely impact human health and habitability in one of the most heavily-populated regions on Earth.

Global warming is gradually taking place with deadly ramifications., it said on the basis of analyses of results, one TW model projects temperatures to exceed the 35-C survivability threshold in parts of South Asia, including Pakistan, India and Bangladesh.

It cites the Ganges river valley, northeastern India and Bangladesh, the eastern coast of India, Chota Nagpur Plateau, northern Sri Lanka, and the Indus Valley of Pakistan as the areas which are likely to be inhabitable.

Going outdoors in large swathes of the densely-populated agricultural regions in this model might be a deadly venture.

According to another model, no regions are projected to exceed 35°C in temperatures; however, vast regions of South Asia are projected to experience episodes exceeding 31-C, which is considered extremely dangerous for most humans.

The vast region covered in the study is home to some 1.5 billion impoverished people who lack air-conditioning in their homes and cannot cope with the extreme heat.

Almost all world countries, including top air polluters such as the United States, China and India, signed a landmark climate agreement named the Paris Climate Accord, which went into effect on November 4, 2016.

The agreement obliged countries to make a unified effort to stop, or at least slow down, global warming.

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