1.STATE OF THE CLIMATE REPORT 2020
- According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD)’s State of the Climate Report, the year 2020 was the eighth warmest since India started keeping records in 1901.
- The State of the Climate Report looks at temperature and rainfall trends annually.
- During the year, the annual average temperature in the country was 0.29 degree Celsius (°C) above normal (29-year average from 1981-2010).
- However, it was much lower than 2016 (+0.71 degrees Celsius), which remains the warmest ever year the country has recorded since 1901.
- Such temperature trends were reported despite the cooling effect of La Nina, a global weather pattern that prevailed in 2020 and is linked tosubstantially below normal temperatures in winter.
- La Nina typically has a cooling effect on global temperatures, but this is now offset by global warming due to greenhouse gasemissions.
- As a result, La Nina years now are warmer than years with El Niño events of the past.
- El Nino and La Nina are the extreme phases of the El Niño and the Southern Oscillation (ENSO) cycle.
- ENSO is a periodic fluctuation in sea surface temperature and the air pressure of the overlying atmosphere across the equatorial Pacific Ocean. It has a major influence on weather and climate patterns such as heavy rains, floods and drought.
- El Niño has a warming influence on global temperatures, whilst La Nina has the opposite effect.
COMPARISON TO GLOBAL AVERAGE TEMPERATURE:
- India’s nearly 0.3 degree rise was less than the average global temperature rise of 1.2 degree (January to October, as per the World Meteorological Organisation’sState of the Global Climate).
WARMEST YEARS OVER INDIA:
- The past decade (2011-2020) was the warmest on record.
- Extremely heavy rain, floods, cold waves and thunderstorms led to significant loss of lives and properties.
- According to the report “Preparing India for Extreme Climate Events” released by the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), over 75% of districts in India are hotspots of extremeclimate events.
- Uttar Pradesh and Bihar reported the highest casualties due to cold waves, lightning and thunder last year.