Unprecedented monsoon rains cause catastrophic floods and mudslides in Kerala state.

Climate change will make devastating Kerala floods more common

With more than a million people displaced by flooding in Kerala, Christian Aid has warned that more devastating floods in India will become the norm if nothing is done to tackle climate change.

As efforts continue to help people sheltering in the thousands of relief camps across the state, Dr Kat Kramer, Christian Aid’s Global Lead on Climate Change, said that this was a wake-up call that more needed to be done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

She said: “Science tells us that India and South Asia can expect more flooding events like the ones we’re seeing in Kerala, as global warming continues. In the Tropics we can expect more than a 10% increase in precipitation for a degree Celsius increase in temperature.  Studies also show that climate change could lead to a reduction in winter rainfall in India, causing drought in the dry summer months and an increase in the monsoon season, leading to more flooding.

“These kind of events are a warning to us all of the scale of climate crisis we are facing.  The idea of more than a million people being displaced by floods is shocking, and rightly so, but if we don’t act to reduce our emissions then these kinds of disasters will become more frequent.

“It also shows how climate change is having a disproportionate impact on the world’s poorest people, which is why we need to see greater support to help the most vulnerable cope with emergencies of this nature.”

Christian Aid has launched an appeal for those affected by Kerala’s floods, and is responding with life-saving assistance for people who have lost their homes.

The appeal will help the charity target some of the southern Indian state’s poorest and most vulnerable villages. Households will receive assistance with safe drinking water, sanitation supplies, mosquito nets, hygiene essentials such as soap, and shelter materials including tarpaulin, rope and blankets.

So far, Christian Aid plans to focus its response on the hard-hit Wayanad district in the north of Kerala and Idukki district in the centre of the state. It will support 10,000 people in each of the two districts. 

People can donate to the appeal by visiting caid.ie/keralafloods

 

For more information and to arrange interviews, please contact:

Republic of Ireland: Meabh Smith on 087 206 8483

Northern Ireland: Lisa Fagan on 07472 018654