ABS-CBN reports that Manila is one of the cities most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, along with Dhaka, Calcutta and Jakarta, according to a British firm specializing in risk analysis.
Maplecroft released on Wednesday a new Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI) that looks into 193 countries’ exposure to extreme weather events such as drought, cyclones, storm surges and wildfires which translate into water stress, loss of crops and land lost to the sea.
The Philippines has been rated “at extreme risk” from climate change in the CCVI, ranking 10th in the list of most vulnerable countries, following Haiti, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Madagascar, Cambodia, Mozambique, DR Congo and Malawi.
In a parallel analysis of major cities at risk, Maplecroft pointed to Manila, Jakarta Addis Ababa, Calcutta and the Bangladesh cities of Dhaka and Chittagong as being most exposed.
“Cities such as Manila, Jakarta and Calcutta are vital centers of economic growth in key emerging markets, but heat waves, flooding, water shortages and increasingly severe and frequent storm events may well increase as climate changes takes hold,” said Charlie Beldon, principal environmental analyst at Maplecroft., in a statement.
“The impacts of this could have far reaching consequences, not only for local populations, but on business, national economies and on the balance sheets of investors around the world, particularly as the economic importance of these nations is set to dramatically increase,” he added.
ARS Technica: Climate skeptics perform independent analysis, finally convinced Earth is getting warmer
Last week, a project called Berkeley Earth released drafts of its findings. The project was started by a physicist, Richard Muller, who had previously expressed doubts about the mathematical rigor of climate science; it received funding from a variety of sources, including the Department of Energy and foundations set up by Bill Gates and the Koch brothers. The Berkeley Earth team set out to analyze records of the Earth’s surface temperatures to answer questions about the trajectory of the planet’s recent warming that had been raised by skeptics and contrarians. To a very large degree, it discovered that climatologists had been doing a pretty good job after all.
Climatologists have generated a number of reconstructions of global temperature trends based on instruments that have been recording temperatures since the 1800s. However, one of those records was produced by members of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia. That record became embroiled in controversy: the CRU was the target of e-mail thefts, was unable to release some of its records due to commercial agreements, and had destroyed some paper copies of original data decades earlier. NASA and NOAA, however, performed independent reconstructions based on publicly available data.
Even those, however, had become the targets of criticism. Recording stations were moved, their surroundings urbanized, and researchers performed adjustments or dropped some stations entirely in order to compensate. Various parties hostile to the findings of climate science have raised questions about this process. Have the scientists really compensated for urbanization? Was the trajectory of the modern warming really as extreme as the temperature records were showing?
And those were the moderate voices. At the more extreme end of the spectrum, some accused researchers of selectively dropping only stations that showed cooling trends, and raised questions about whether the planet had warmed at all. These questions weren’t very realistic—melting ice, migrating species, and other factors made it pretty clear the planet was warming—but the climate debate has no shortage of unreasonable voices.