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Climate change cost India $159bn income loss in 2021

India suffered an income loss of $159bn or 5.4% of its gross domestic product, in the service, manufacturing, agriculture and construction sectors due to extreme heat in 2021 according to a new report.

The Climate Transparency Report 2022 compiled by Climate Transparency organization revealed that heat exposure in the country led to the loss of 16bn potential labour hours, a 39% increase from 1990-1999.

Climate Transparency is an international partnership of 16 partner organizations from G20 countries working in the area of climate change and global warming.

The report says labour productivity in India is projected to decline by 5% from the 1986-2006 reference period if global temperatures increase by 1.5°C. This decline will be 2.1 times more if the global temperatures increase by 2.5°C and 2.7 times more at a 3°C scenario.

According to the report between 2016–2021, extreme events such as cyclones, flash floods, floods, and landslides caused damage to crops in over 36m hectares, a $3.75bn loss for farmers in the country.

The annual damage from river flooding in the country is likely to increase by around 49% at 1.5°C of warming. The damage from cyclones will increase by 5.7%.

The rainfall pattern in India has changed in the past 30 years, impacting many economic activities such as agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

“Snowfall in India is expected to decrease under 1.5°C scenario by 13% when compared with the reference period’s snowfall levels. At 3°C of warming, the decrease is expected to be 2.4 times the 1.5°C scenario.” The Earth’s global surface temperature has increased by around 1.1° C compared with the average in 1850-1900.



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