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India’s Heat Season Arrives Early and Extreme
It’s only March, and communities from Kerala to Gujarat are already battling extreme heat in India. Temperatures reached 41ºC (105ºF) in Surat along with a steep 20 percent jump in emergency services related to heat. Communities in Kerala were hit again by climate change with extreme heat this week following the devastating flooding last fall. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) issued warnings of warmer than normal temperatures in several states across India and a specific heat wave warning for Gujarat and Kerala.
Extreme heat puts millions of people in India and around the world at risk. So far, India’s heat waves have accounted for over 22,000 deaths since 1992, according to the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). To build resilience to extreme heat, NDMA recently convened its annual workshop of key stakeholders including IMD, leading states and experts, such as NRDC and our partners the Indian Institute of Public Health – Gandhinagar. An important development this year is NDMA’s new goal to expand heat action plans to 19 states in India….
Democrats Block Disaster Relief Bill Over Funds for Puerto Rico
Senate Democrats blocked a $13.5 billion Republican disaster aid bill, contending it lacks enough aid for Puerto Rico, leaving the Senate without an immediate path forward to provide relief for areas hit by recent Midwest floods, Hurricanes Florence and Michael, and California wildfires.
The aid package, amended last week by Republican Richard Shelby of Alabama, would give Puerto Rico $600 million in nutrition assistance, but it doesn’t contain the same funds the House authorized to bolster flood protection and repair the electrical grid. The Senate failed to advance its version of the bill Monday on a 44-49 vote…
Mozambique Cholera Cases Top 1,000 in Wake of Cyclone Idai
Mozambique has confirmed more than 1,000 cases of cholera as an outbreak of the water-borne disease spreads following a tropical cyclone last month which has so far killed at least 598 people in the southeast African nation.
The number of cholera infections rose from 246 on March 30, the health ministry said in a statement on Monday. President Filipe Nyusi last week announced a campaign to vaccinate 800,000 people against the disease, which causes diarrhea and dehydration and can kill if untreated. One person has so far died from it….