Introduction: Extreme Weather Events and Human Health: A Global Perspective

  • Rais AkhtarEmail author


Flash floods, heatwave, coldwave, droughts, strong winds and storms, etc. are few examples of extreme weather conditions. 2003 heatwaves in Western and Central Europe resulted in the death of more than 70,000 people, and 2005 Katrina hurricane was considered the costliest disaster that devastated southern USA. It caused $160 billion worth of damages to the Gulf Coast. Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria combined with devastating California wildfires and other natural catastrophes to make 2017 the most expensive year (about $306 billion), on record for disasters in the USA. 2018 brought Hurricane Michael, which struck the Florida coast in October, and the Camp Fire is California’s deadliest and most destructive fire on record. The 1999 Orissa (now Odisha) cyclone in India was the strongest recorded tropical cyclone in the North Indian Ocean and among the most destructive in the region. Devastations as a result of unusual flooding in Uttarakhand in 2013, Kashmir in 2014, Kerala in 2018 and typhoon Mangkhut in Philippines in 2018 are examples of extreme weather events. Scientists assert that Europe’s death toll from weather disasters could rise 50-fold by the end of twenty-first century, with extreme heat alone causing deaths of more than 1,50,000 a year if nothing is done to curb the effects of climate change. In July 2019, Europe has been confounded by another massive heat wave that could break records again.


Hippocrates 2003 European heatwaves Katrina hurricane Hurricane Harvey Typhoon Mangkhut Forest fires Kashmir Kerala floods Respiratory diseases Donald Trump Paris climate agreement IPCC Global Warming of 1.5 °C 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Institute of Health Management ResearchNew DelhiIndia

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