Global Climate Risk Index 2021

The Global Climate Risk Index analyses to what extent countries and regions have been affected by impacts of weather-related loss events (storms, floods, heat waves etc.). The report is annually released by Germanwatch, an environmental think tank and sustainable development lobbyist. 

The 16th edition of the Global Climate Risk Index was released on January 25, 2021. The Global CRI 2021 displayed data based on human impacts (fatalities) and direct economic losses due to extreme weather events in 2019 and between 2000 and 2019. 

UPSC aspirants can also get a comprehensive List of Reports released by International Organisations at the linked article. 

In this article, we shall discuss a summary of the report released by Germanwatch for Global Climate Risk Index 2021, countries affected and the impact of severe weather events. It is an important topic for preparation for the upcoming IAS Exam

Global Climate Risk Index 2021 [UPSC Notes]:-Download PDF Here

Global Climate Risk Index 2021 – Highlights 

The Global Climate Risk Index analyses quantified impacts of extreme weather events, in terms of fatalities and impact of extreme weather events. The index is based on the data from the Munich Re NatCatSERVICE, which is considered worldwide as one of the most reliable and complete databases on this matter.

The Index aims at contextualising ongoing climate policy debates, especially the International climate negotiations – looking at the near world impacts in 2019 and the past two decades. 

Given below are the key findings and highlights based on the data from 180 countries:

  • Mozambique, Zimbabwe and the Bahamas were the countries most affected by the impact of extreme weather events in 2019
  • Puerto Rico, Myanmar and Haiti were the most affected countries by the impact of extreme weather events during 2000 and 2019
  • Between 2000 and 2019, altogether, 475000 people lost their lives as a direct result of more than 11000extreme weather events globally and losses amounted to around US$2.56 trillion (in purchasing power parties)
  • Storms and cyclones were one of the major causes of damages in 2019. Of the ten most affected countries, six were hit by tropical cyclones
  • Climate change and extreme weather events cause the most distress to the countries which are still developing and have a lower coping capacity. Eight out of the ten most affected by the quantified effects of weather events in 2019 belong to the low to lower-middle-income category
  • The table given below shows the most affected countries in 2019 and India ranks at the 7th position as per the 2021 report:

Global Climate Risk Index 2021

  • The table given below shows the results as per the long-term Global Climate Risk Index, i.e., the most affected countries between 2000 and 2019:

Global Climate Risk Index 2000-2019

The end of 2019 marked the beginning of one of the widest spread pandemic which had hit the world and severely affected the economy, climate and livelihoods of the people globally. This global COVID-19 pandemic has reiterated the fact that both risk and vulnerability are systematic and interconnected. It is therefore important to strengthen the resilience of the most vulnerable against different types of risk (climatic, geophysical, economic or health-related).

Also, check the List of Environment Conventions & Protocols for the upcoming CSE preparation.

India and Climate Risk Index

  • India ranked at the 7th position in the Global CRI 2021 with a CRI score of 16.67. The score and position improvised in comparison to the 2020 report, where India ranked at the 5th position with a CRI score of 18.17
  • In 2019, monsoons lasted for an extra month and 110% of the normal rainfall occurred, which is most since 1994. The floods caused by these heavy and excessive rains were responsible for the death of over 1800 people across 14 states and led to the displacement of 1.8 million people
  • Overall, the economic damage of US$10 billion was caused by the intense monsoons in 2019 and affected around 11.8 million people
  • Eight tropical cyclones hit the country in the year 2019. The worst of which was “Cyclone Fani” which affected a total of 28 million people, killing nearly 90 people in India and Bangladesh and causing economic losses of US$8.1 billion

Also, visit Cyclone Fani: RSTV – In Depth

To know more about Monsoon in India, candidates can visit the linked article. 

Tropical Cyclones – One of the Biggest weather-related loss events in 2019

What is Tropical Cyclones?

A tropical cyclone is a rapidly rotating storm system characterized by a low-pressure centre, a closed low-level atmospheric circulation, strong winds, and a spiral arrangement of thunderstorms that produce heavy rain and/or squalls.

Know the formation, characteristics and facts related to Tropical Cyclones at the linked article.

In the Climate Risk Index 2021 tropical cyclones led to six countries being listed among the bottom ten:

  • Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi were struck by Cyclone Idai
  • The Bahamas were hit by Hurricane Dorian
  • Japan was hit by Typhoon Haibis
  • Various cyclones in India

Global Climate Risk Index 2021 [UPSC Notes]:-Download PDF Here

Get the updates UPSC Syllabus for the prelims and mains exam at the linked article and start your IAS Exam preparation now.

Given below are the links to a few other important Index that are released by different organisations to measure other aspects of development:

Frequently Asked Questions on Global Climate Risk Index

Q 1. What was India’s rank as per Global Climate Risk Index 2020?

Ans. India ranked 7th with a CRI score of 16.67 in the Global Climate Risk Index.

Q 2. How is the Climate Risk Index score calculated?

Ans. Each country’s CRI is derived from a country’s average ranking in the four indicating categories. Thus,
CRI Score = {(death toll x ⅙) + (deaths per 100000 inhabitants x ⅓) + (absolute losses in PPP X ⅙) + (losses per GDP unit x ⅓).

Q 3. How many countries participate in the Global Climate Risk Index?

Ans. Data from 180 countries are calculated and measured for the Global Climate Risk Index.

Q 4. Which country topped in the Global Climate Risk Index 2021?

Ans. Mozambique, Zimbabwe and the Bahamas were the countries that topped the Global CRI 2021 and were the most affected by the impact of extreme weather events in 2019.

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