‘I drink more than 5 liters of water a day’: How Indians survived their greatest heat in half a century | The world

'I drink more than 5 liters of water a day': How Indians survived their greatest heat in half a century |  The world

Unprecedented heat wave is affecting India and other countries Pakistan, Causing power outages and water shortages for millions of people. In some areas, thermometers are approaching 50 degrees Celsius.

Temperatures have been rising in the region for weeks. In March, thermometers in New Delhi recorded 40.1 degrees Celsius, the highest since 1946 and not seen at this time of year. Thursday (28) The Indian capital faced 46 degreesIt makes life more difficult for residents, especially those who have to work outside.

“I drink more than 5 liters of water a day. This is the only thing I can do, ”said Mohammed, 50, carrying a large piece of metal on his shoulder under the scorching sun. “I have to work for a living,” he recalls, living on a construction site. “I’m sleeping here. At least we have a fan,” he tries to comfort himself.

Mohammed works in one of the state’s most modern neighborhoods, witnessing rapid growth in the construction sector. But it is beginning to feel the effects of high temperatures.

An excavator tries to contain a naturally occurring fire in the Indian capital, New Delhi (Photo: Adnan Abidi / REUTERS)

“Some workers have been suffering from the heat for the past few days,” said foreman Mohammed Yassin. “Residents have to stop several times a day to rest, which delays construction,” he comments.

The heat wave is taking place in the middle of the traditional Muslim fast of Ramadan, which ends this weekend. Those who respect the custom go without food from sunrise to sunset, which makes working conditions more difficult. More than 200 million people in India follow Islam.

In the northern part of the capital, a waste heap caught fire on Thursday, according to local authorities, due to high temperatures. It took hours for firefighters to contain the blaze, which worsened the air quality in the metropolis.

Gazipur, the capital’s largest waste dump, has witnessed three other fires in a month on a 65 – meter high waste hill. The city of more than 20 million inhabitants lacks the modern infrastructure to treat the 12,000 tons of waste generated daily.

Man smashes ice cube for distribution among Ahmedabad residents in India – Photo: Amit Dave / REUTERS

The heat waves killed even more 6,500 people in India since 2010. Scientists say they are changing more frequently due to climate change and are getting tougher. Says Mariam Zachariah of the Book Institute at Imperial College London:

Cultivation of Pakistan In danger

I do not know Pakistan According to the Pakistan Meteorological Society, the temperature in some areas is 8 degrees above normal and in some areas it is up to 48 degrees.

Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy and in this country where 40% of the total workforce is employed, water supply has to be managed by farmers who are directly affected by the lack of heat and rainfall. “Public health and agriculture in the country will face serious threats from this year’s extreme temperatures,” Climate Change Minister Sherry Rahman said.

Pakistanis try to cool off in the lake during hot days – Photo: Akhtar Sumro / REUTERS

High temperatures also cause explosions in power consumption. In many cities Pakistan The power went out for eight hours already. Coal is also running out to power power plants and their operations. According to Pakistan Energy Minister Quram Dastgir Khan, the power crisis has already affected the entire country.

Power cuts have been imposed in factories in Rajasthan, northwestern India, the neighboring state of Gujarat, and Andhra Pradesh, further south, to reduce consumption. According to local media reports, major power plants are also facing coal shortages.

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