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India Records Highest Temperature Ever Amid Drought Driving Despair


India Records Highest Temperature Ever Amid Drought Driving Despair

Andrea Germanos, staff writer

India recorded its hottest day on the books on Thursday amid a scorching heatwave and "staggering" number of farmer suicides.

Sizzling at 51 degrees Celsius (123.8 degrees F), the temperature in the city of Phalodi in the western state of Rajasthan topped the nation's previous record of 50.6 Celsius set in 1956.


How terrible it will be ten years from now. It is hard to even imagine what it will be like twenty years from now. How hot is hot when you are only a human being and you can die from excessive heat?

How hot will be hot ten years from now?

Your children will see how hot it will be in twenty years and that heat ...just might kill ya.

How hot will hot actually get?


My heart goes out to the Indian farmers who have suffered blow after blow. Monoculture and GMO's will not save us but, as Vandana Shiva has pointed out, small, numerous multi crop organic farms can feed us--but I wonder if this is still true since our potable water is becoming scarce and so much of it is polluted. As if this were not enough, corporations are rushing to privatize and bottle water. Same with food and other necessities.


In 1956 - 60 years ago - the temperature was the same as that reported in 2016. Were the same cause and effect responsible?


If Anthropogenic Global Heating is beginning to affect the monsoon, then it will be a lot more than merely 330 million people in India who in future will feel the need to migrate to somewhere where they can grow food.

I have read also that the Indian haze, to which small cooking fires may contribute a considerable part, can affect the onset of the monsoon.

As for farmers who get crucified by banks; the banking industry should be lorced to face their responsibilites to the farming community in times of drought. It is not just in India that farmers commit suicide because of indebtedness to bankers because of drought. We need farmers; bankers are a mere luxury as there are other ways of distributing money.


And how much of the MSM will cover this?


You are in the denial stage of the human addiction to fossil fuels and petrochemicals.


The Ganges and Indus and other River susyems in India still have a tremendous flow of water. Monsoon seasons still drops water in huge amounts. The problem is industry treats water as "waste" in their processes drawing it out in great amounts and than dumping it back in a state that is unusable for anyone else. This than puts pressure on using and draining aquifiers for potable water even as that same industry lays claim to that as THEIRS as well.

I read an article that stated that 98 percent of German urine samples showed traces of Glysophates. The toxins these industries produce is everywhere.


Look up "Wet Bulb"


I assume you mention that in reference to talking about when the temperature and humidity reach a point where the human body cannot cool itself? That is my point about how an electrical power outage will routinely be lethal to old coots like me. What is scariest is how poor people like in India who may not have any technological fix or even water (can you imagine?)!

I feel that we need a wake up call climatic event to show people that global warming won't just go away by not dealing with it. For caring and intelligent folks, they already see plenty of evidence that it is way past being real and becoming dangerous in fact. I mean a climate event or a giant storm that could convince those people who don't really care and are purposefully ignoring evidence. Those people like the republicans, or Trump or the Koch brothers need to feel that they cannot escape either.

Wet bulb is a meterological term of measurement that is kind of complex and difficult to explain, at least to me. However people understand already that when it is too hot and too humid that it is misery.

I'll just mention the opposite of a dry heat instead. Not technically accurate of course but then people will pick up on my point more easily. That that kind of heat will kill you.


Not so complex. wet bulb refers to a thermometer with a wet piece of cloth over the bulb. The rate of evaporative cooling causes the thermometer to read cooler than the air temperature. This temperature is compared to the air temperature (using a "dry bulb") under a standard procedure (whirling the pair of thermometers over one's head). The difference between the wet bulb and the dry bulb indicates the relative humidity by way of a table or graph.

The deadly wet-bulb temperature of 95-96F corresponds to a 95F day with 100% humidity, or a 110F day with about 65% relative humidity, or 120F at 40% humidity. Supposedly they have come close to these values already in the Persian-Gulf states - which can experience severe heat and humidity. Countries like Bahrain, Quatar, and the UAE and maybe parts of India will become uninhabitable outside of air-conditioned spaces some times of year in the next few decades. Any but brief chores outdoors work will require some kind of air-conditioned space-suit.

Complex warm-blooded life can adapt to extreme cold far more easily than extreme heat - just look at the diversity of mammalian and avian life in the arctic compared to the Arabian peninsula. This is something that climate denialists miss when they say "climate has always changed". Yes, it has changed. But, setting their ignoring of the rate of change aside, the global climatic excursions in the past have generally been toward colder temperatures than today, not hotter temperatures. The hottest spells have have been always associated with mass extinction, the coldest spells, with diversification of complex life.


Give me a break, I can read Wikipedia too. Thanks. Besides this phony patronizing it remains a meterological measurement. Besides that your explanation got it wrong too...lol. Reread the wiki entry. In any case you will not get the web bub readings generally because it is a base line measurement and doesn't reflect overall conditions. Variables such as sunlight or shade plus technological cooling and even wearing clothes or not need be included to make the measurement realistic for people.

Nevertheless to colloquialize. It is a measurement for when it is too humid to allow sweat to evaporate and therefore cool the body and at the same time it is too hot for the body (so that at that point the body picks up ambient heat (when sweating is useless) from the air and begins to overheat.


Sorry, I should have made this a general comment and not addressed to you then.

Please remember that "reply" simply means the continuation of a thread - and not necessarily a rebuttal or picking an argument. My reply was offered to the general readership - as you yourself admitted that you did not know how relative humidity is measured, and I suspect that only 2% of the US population even understands that for a given water content in air, relative humidity goes down as temperature goes up.

I don't exactly know what you mean by base line measurement. A base line measurement is a measurement one takes before adding a variable in a experimental process. For example, a doctor taking baseline blood tests before prescribing a drug, or the like.

I never looked up any Wikipedia article. I already know how to measure relative humidity with a sling psychrometer. I've done it a number of times.


A general comment to whom exactly? You want to play oneupmanship games and I don't. Do you drink on Saturday nights because you get combative or was that just Nader worship coming out prior to last night? I have a hard time with your passive aggressive stuff though. You go off and on and I don't need to invest in figuring out your mood to be honest.

She posed a question to me or rather asked me one in an oblique way to which I responded politely. Then you come along to do what?. Did you really try to help out in a general way? Bullshit! Okay. Baloney on that. Moreover you're 'not so complex'passive aggressive reference seems not overly friendly since the way you responded to my friendly humor with you (which you responded to in a humorless way as usual at least for that subject - hard core socialism, Trotskyism and so forth) kind of put me off us having friendly chats. Then here you come wanting to show you know what something means? Like someone needed you to announce that? She knew and I knew and well gee whiz - Yunzer says he knew. You don't have to prove anything to me.okay? Come up with something that adds to the debate, that people may have missed or need to know about something but telling me that you know what something means lol...um thanks Yunzer. What can I say. Um...thanks...sigh!


Actually, it is you who sounds like you've been drinking and getting combative.

As I stated, I was just contributing to a to a discussion thread.

I just added some clarifications to my comment.


Um? Thanks Yunzer. Okay that's really good that you know that Thanks for sharing.


You are conflating drought with heat actually. The tropics are very hot and have the greatest diversity. Arid regions suffer from lack of water as opposed to heat. Since you are so wise and even know what a Trotskyite is, what extinctions were those that were associated with heat? You seem to think that things just sort of heated up periodically. I know of one which may have been a ghg event due to volcanic emissions but not the others. Please correct me if I am wrong. In general Arctic zones are in fact deserts except they are cold ones and a lack of available water corresponds to a limited diversity as compared to the tropics. But maybe I have misunderstood your comment. I know you will correct me if I have.


There is this thing called "variability". Yes, this record temperature measured on this single day was only slightly higher than one measured in 1956 and cannot be definitely tied to global warming. Of course, we have not seen the end of the India pre-monsoon hot season either - and if we see a couple more similar records set, the probability of it being due to global warming becomes almost certain.

But at any rate, it is average global temperature that counts and based on that, the evidence for accelerating global warming is totally non-controversial.

And no, "but it's been a really cool May here in Johnstown" (actually only slightly cooler than normal - some snow is fairly common in western Pennsylvania in early May) is not an argument; stations in W. Pennsylvania are included in the average (eastern Quebec has had a really cold spring - it's included in the average too) - and that average is way, way above the 1951 to 1980 mean. Get it?


Thanks Yunzer,

I learn a lot from your scientific posts. This poster commits abusive dialog against everyone he has a disagreement with (daily basis.)

It's a shame really, since he makes good posts sometimes. He takes everything personally as an attack on his private chat room. Perhaps I recognize this since I probably used to do this myself to some extent! Maybe I still do?

Anyway, I flagged his abuse against you. Accusing you of drinking is uncalled for, in the face of your very reasonable and informative posts. I don't recall reading or doing your wet-bulb, dry bulb procedure with a conversion chart for relative humidity. I have wondered about 60 degree C readings reported by the BBC in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan a few years ago. Apparently, some readings are questionable, but the trend is not.



And regarding the notion that a wet-bulb temperature of 95-96 results in rapid heat exhaustion and death - I know of a case where it actually happened a few years ago in a coal mine the group I work for investigated. A miner was inspecting the bleeders (ventilation passages) in a deep longwall coal mine in Alabama. Temperatures in the mine are hot due to the depth and a higher than normal geothermal gradient in that area. Nonetheless, nobody thought that 95F in the mine was anything more than uncomfortable - but the did not understand that the humidity in the mine was near 100%. (i.e. a wet-bulb temperature of also 95) - far higher than anything that happens on a hot humid day at the surface.. The miner succumbed and it was almost a triple fatality when two others went to look for him.) The cause of death was heat exhaustion - the air was otherwise fine.