Last month was the world’s warmest June yet recorded. We have seen the warmest temperatures ever recorded in our dear homeland. Researchers are very concerned about increasing temperatures on land and at sea.
This is a very difficult situation, but some features make the heat even more intolerable. Ours is a most thickly populated country and mega cities are overcrowded. This aspect aggravates the problem and is likely to become more problematic with time.
The heat wave is also causing a major electricity and power crisis. Daily power cuts, which last for multiple hours a day, have left most of the citizens struggling to withstand the heat without the help of fans or air conditioners.
The heat has been a great source of discomfort for everyone in the country, but some have suffered more than others have. A large portion of the population lives in poverty, and their dwellings are not appropriate enough to help with the heat at all. Their small homes absorb heat throughout the day and an absence of fresh water are some examples of the added challenges they face.
There are countless outdoor workers, like those working in construction or agriculture, who have to endure the heat all day while doing very labor-intensive work. Workers in sectors of brick manufacturing go through similar pains, as they may work surrounded by hot ovens or furnaces.
Therefore, it is no surprise that many of them suffer from heat stroke, fatigue, dehydration, and cramps while on the job. Such conditions naturally hinder their productivity as well, which harms the economy.
According to recent reports, sectors such as garment manufacturing, transport, and retail trade already observe losses of up to 10% of income due to heat-related issues. Low labor productivity is surely causing output losses. Undoubtedly, the consequences of not addressing the heat waves are coming at a huge cost.
Unfortunately, we do not have any system in place to cope with such weather issues. Currently, heatwave warning alerts are forwarded to some news channels, which are then expected to report them to the population. However, we can improve this process. Better forecasting technology will allow the development of a better early warning system.
Information regarding expected heat waves should not only be relayed soon and as directly as possible, but guidelines similar to those published by the World Health Organization need to be issued to the citizens on how to best deal with the upcoming weather conditions.
We also need to increase the greenery in some areas of the major cities. This is a common tactic employed in many foreign countries, to not only increase the visual appeal of a neighborhood but also help cool it down. Trees plantation on the sides of roads offers much-needed shade to the surrounding area.
Such initiatives need continuation and support through the creation of parks and better city planning. Spacing out housing areas and finding ways to prevent congestion in the cities may assist in minimizing the effect of the heat.
The country should also prepare by filling up its water reserves ahead of time to aid the poor in such times. The water can also be used to support agriculture. Orders for adjustments to work hours may also help people catch a break when the temperature is at its highest. These are all common parts of heat wave plans implemented by countries across the globe.
It is also significant to comprehend that the tendency of rising temperatures across the globe and more frequent natural disasters are all a result of climate change. We must strive to reduce emissions that contribute to global warming. Otherwise, heat waves will only continue to become more dangerous.