Climate change is a malady. It’s the dark matter that can no longer be avoided. But here is a question. Which are the countries facing extreme weather events? Have you ever thought about that? While we know that climate change is for real and that nothing that one could ever do to suppress this topic or avoid the real situation out there could deny the fact that we are in an age where the ills associated with climate change have actually begun to take shape- some important questions need us to deal with them now.
Firstly, why, despite much of the broader, educated and civilized world being aware of the ills of the great discontent of our times- climate change- the world is still continuing to struggle with this malady? Secondly, why cannot the developed world and its governments actually partner substantively instead of the way they are policing the situation at present, to broker the much-needed change?
But while these seemingly simple and ‘easy to address’ questions may seem standard and nothing too ghastly in their element of surprise, one has got to understand the true despair is being felt by some countries at a time where the environment has begun back-answering to our carelessness in a rather insidious way.
That we have all been callous and far too casual in the sense that much of what we ignore as a part of our duties toward the environment are, in effect, rendering us a damning blow- there are some parts of the world that have begun to feel the impact of climate change a bit too harshly.
There are several countries facing extreme weather events. And a worthy reminder of this scenario has been the events that have led to massive ecological and environmental disturbances.
In fact, Japan, Germany, and the Philippines are some of the countries facing extreme weather events- a collective reminder to the remainder of the world to sit back and take notice; that if nothing constructive is done now then it may be too late to tackle the menace that is climate change.
So, there arises a question.
How are these countries facing extreme weather events? At a time where droughts, storms and heatwaves have killed more people than they have in the past, it appears that there’s something more telling about the crisis called climate change than there could ever have been in the past.
In 2018, Japan, the Philippines and Germany were hit particularly hard. To what extent have extreme weather events inflicted casualties and financial losses around the world? And which countries are worst-affected?
In a report compiled by the Indian Express, there seems to be no doubt about the fact that there is an immediate need to worry:
For 14 years, the environmental and development organization, Germanwatch, has presented this report at the annual United Nations climate conference (COP). For 2018, the index revealed Japan, the Philippines and Germany were hardest hit by weather extremes.
Japan, one of the most progressive and developed nations in the world find itself at the top of the rankings.
In a country where there’s already a lot of trouble brewing with respect to the nation’s ageing population- 1,282 people lost their lives as a result of extreme rainfall, heatwaves and typhoons last year. The total damage was equivalent to €32 billion ($35 billion) and led to the loss of 0.6% of Japan’s gross domestic product (GDP).
In 2018, there was no escaping the ills of typhoons in The Philippines either, where the Typhoon Mangkhoot affected more than 2,50,000 people, a collective toll of suffering ensured by the landslides and heavy rains.
Extreme weather for the better part of the last year meant that there were 455 fatalities in all.
Next in line among the countries facing extreme weather was Germany. To emphasize the woes from Germany’s end, it’s important to note what the Indian Express report highlighted. In 2018, the country experienced severe heat and drought. Between April and July, the average temperature was 16.6 degrees Celsius — 2.9 degrees higher than before industrialization (approx. 1870).