India On The Frontline Of Climate Change In Asia: McKinsey Report

A new report, ‘Climate Risk And Response In Asia,’ from the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) on the socioeconomic risks of the changing climate for Asia, suggests climate change is already having substantial physical impacts across Asia

November 26, 2020

A new report, ‘Climate Risk And Response In Asia,’ from the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) on the socioeconomic risks of the changing climate for Asia, suggests climate change is already having substantial physical impacts across Asia, and the affected regions are likely to grow in number and size.

 

“India is on the front line of a changing climate. As we seek to grow the economy and remain a key source of growth for the world—climate change is a critical challenge that the region will need to manage and mitigate,” said Suvojoy Sengupta, Partner, McKinsey & Company and co-author of the report. The report draws on climate model projections to highlight how a continuously changing climate creates new risks and uncertainties in the next three decades, and what steps can be taken to manage them. The new report estimates the inherent risk from climate change without adaptation and mitigation to size the potential impact and highlight the case for action.

 

India could become one of the first places in the world to experience heat waves that cross the survivability limit for a healthy human being. Without targeted adaptation action, around 160- 200 million people in India could annually bear a five per cent chance of being exposed to a lethal heat wave as early as 2030, a ~40 per cent cumulative likelihood over the decade centered on 2030. We estimate that the number of daylight hours during which outdoor work is unsafe will increase approximately 15 per cent by 2030, resulting in approximately 2.5-4.5 per cent, or $150- 250 billion, risk to GDP. While establishing the overall risks of climate change in Asia, this report seeks to also emphasize the path forward through adaptation and mitigation.

 

“Much as thinking about information systems and cyber-risks has become integrated into corporate and public-sector decision making, climate change and its resulting risks will also need to feature as a major factor in decisions,” said Jonathan Woetzel, Director, McKinsey Global Institute.