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Storms and floods

Storms and floods
Globally, the number of weather-related natural disasters have more than tripled since the 1960s. And every year these disasters result in over 60,000 deaths. As the Earth warms, air holds more moisture and that increased vapor in the atmosphere combined with low pressure can result in more severe storms.
Floods are also increasing in frequency and intensity and that will continue through the coming century. Flooding contaminates freshwater supplies, it can heighten the risk of water-borne diseases and it can create breeding grounds for disease carrying insects such as mosquitoes.
There was heavy torrential rain from 10 at night until 2 in the morning. It was raining so hard that it was nearly impossible to go out. This June a cloud burst caused a chain of events that led to widespread devastation in Uttarakhand. I had seen plenty of floods but this was the most violent one I ever saw.The flood destroyed everything I had. When the flood hit, my husband ran into the forest. He still hasn’t made it back. My son also ran into the fields, and I haven’t heard from him since. Whatever will become of me now? We were stuck in the bus. In the dead of night, at 1 AM, a lady came rapping on all the windows.
When she knocked, we woke up, and then she screamed. Run, run, run, run! And then we leapt up and ran! And everything, all our possessions, all our money, all of it’s gone, finished! Everything was washed away son. Only two or four houses were spared in my village. Nothing I own remains there, so I’m staying in this school.
People are coming from all over to help us, but we are ruined.

Read the information below before watching the video above.

Extreme weather events are one of the most obvious ways in which the climate crisis affects human health. Extreme weather events (storms, floods, drought, and heatwaves) are already increasing at 1°C of warming, and they are expected to increase in both frequency and severity over the coming decades (IPCC Chapter 19).

Floods and storms affect health directly, causing injuries and deaths and increasing exposure to infectious diseases. They also destroy homes and communities, displacing people, ruining livelihoods, disrupting education, and exacting a heavy toll on mental health.

Watch the video above for a description of one flood event in India.


D. McCoy and N.Watts. 2015. Climate Change: Health Impacts and Opportunities a Summary and Discussion of the IPCC Working Group 2 Report.

IPCC, 2014: Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability. Part A: Global and Sectoral Aspects. Contribution of Working Group II to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Field, C.B., V.R. Barros, D.J. Dokken, K.J. Mach, M.D. Mastrandrea, T.E. Bilir, M. Chatterjee, K.L. Ebi, Y.O. Estrada, R.C. Genova, B. Girma, E.S. Kissel, A.N. Levy, S. MacCracken, P.R. Mastrandrea, and L.L.White (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, 1132 pp.

For more information and further reading, see the ‘See Also’ section below.

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