Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

India Records Highest Temperature Ever: 123.8 Degrees Fahrenheit

Climate
India Records Highest Temperature Ever: 123.8 Degrees Fahrenheit

India recorded its hottest day on the books on Thursday amid a scorching heatwave and "staggering" number of farmer suicides.

Sizzling at 51 degrees Celsius (123.8 degrees F), the temperature in the city of Phalodi in the western state of Rajasthan topped the nation's previous record of 50.6 Celsius set in 1956.

CNN reports:

The IMD [India Meteorological Department] has issued a red-level alert for Rajasthan as well as for other states like Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, where temperatures, despite not having crossed the 50-degree mark, are higher than average.

India has recorded higher than normal temperatures throughout 2016.

Many areas are experiencing severe heat waves and state governments estimate more than 370 people killed so far.

And relief isn't coming soon.

"Severe heatwave conditions will prevail in north, west India and central India for the next 10 days," the IMD warns.

According to Laxman Singh Rathore, director general of the IMD, look to climate change for the cause in the increasing temperatures. "It has been observed that since 2001, places in northern India, especially in Rajasthan, are witnessing a rising temperature trend every year. The main reason is the excessive use of energy and emission of carbon dioxide. Factors like urbanization and industrialization too have added to the global warming phenomenon," he stated.

Weeks of high temperatures have "also led to acute water shortage in many areas of central and western India which has seen water riots, government-monitored rationing and armed guards at reservoirs," the Hindustan Times reports.

There is a prolonged drought as well, withering crops and sprouting hopelessness in farmers.

"Constant failure of crops. Very low produce. He couldn't recover the investments, could not pay back the bank loans. That's why he killed himself," said the brother of 41-year-old cotton and sugarcane farmer Srikrishna Pandit Agee who hanged himself this month.

His was among the roughly 400 farmer suicides that have already occurred since the beginning of the year.

Dnyaneshwar Jadhav says his brother Tukaram, a small cotton farmer in the state of Maharashtra, took his own life over the distress of loans and failed crop yields. "When I look into the well, I feel like dying. Life is such a struggle," Dnyaneshwar said to NPR. "We used to earn over $300 for our cotton, we now get less than $100 because the yield is so small."

Last year offers a grim picture of what could be in store.

In 2015, after a heatwave claimed the lives of some 2,500 people and was followed by low monsoon rains, India's earth sciences minister said, "Let us not fool ourselves that there is no connection between the unusual number of deaths from the ongoing heat wave and the certainty of another failed monsoon."

"It's not just an unusually hot summer, it is climate change," he said at the time.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

How Carbon Farming Can Reverse Climate Change

Earth Sees Record Warming for 12 Straight Months

10 Reasons You Should Have Hope for the Future

Al Gore’s Groundbreaking Film … 10 Years Later

Yves Adams / Instagram

A rare yellow penguin has been photographed for what is believed to be the first time.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The Crystal building in London, England is the first building in the world to be awarded an outstanding BREEAM (BRE Environmental Assessment Method) rating and a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) platinum rating. Alphotographic / Getty Images

By Stuart Braun

We spend 90% of our time in the buildings where we live and work, shop and conduct business, in the structures that keep us warm in winter and cool in summer.

But immense energy is required to source and manufacture building materials, to power construction sites, to maintain and renew the built environment. In 2019, building operations and construction activities together accounted for 38% of global energy-related CO2 emissions, the highest level ever recorded.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Houses and wooden debris are shown in flood waters from Hurricane Katrina Sept. 11, 2005 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Jerry Grayson / Helifilms Australia PTY Ltd / Getty Images

By Eric Tate and Christopher Emrich

Disasters stemming from hazards like floods, wildfires, and disease often garner attention because of their extreme conditions and heavy societal impacts. Although the nature of the damage may vary, major disasters are alike in that socially vulnerable populations often experience the worst repercussions. For example, we saw this following Hurricanes Katrina and Harvey, each of which generated widespread physical damage and outsized impacts to low-income and minority survivors.

Read More Show Less
A gray wolf is seen howling outside in winter. Wolfgang Kaehler / Contributor / Getty Images

Wisconsin will end its controversial wolf hunt early after hunters and trappers killed almost 70 percent of the state's quota in the hunt's first 48 hours.

Read More Show Less
Tom Vilsack speaks on December 11, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware after being nominated to be Agriculture Secretary by U.S. President Joe Biden. Jim Watson / AFP / Getty Images

By Jessica Corbett

Sen. Bernie Sanders on Tuesday was the lone progressive to vote against Tom Vilsack reprising his role as secretary of agriculture, citing concerns that progressive advocacy groups have been raising since even before President Joe Biden officially nominated the former Obama administration appointee.

Read More Show Less