Kerala is currently experiencing scorching heat, with temperatures exceeding 35 degrees Celsius in most districts. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a yellow alert for Palakkad, Kottayam, Alappuzha, Kollam, and Thiruvananthapuram districts due to the high temperatures and humid air, with the maximum temperature expected to increase by 2-4 degrees Celsius. The IMD alert reads, ‘Maximum temperatures are very likely to be around 39?C in Palakkad, 37?C in Kottayam, Alappuzha & Kollam and 36?C in Thiruvananthapuram districts (2 to 4?C above normal) on 24.04.2023.’
While some parts of the state have received summer rain, the heatwave-like condition persists in Kerala, with hot and discomfort weather very likely over these districts except in hilly areas. A yellow alert signifies that the weather conditions are expected to be relatively mild but still warrant caution. The IMD issues a yellow alert when the temperature is expected to be between 35°C and 40°C or when the heat index is expected to be between 41°C and 47°C. Additionally, a yellow alert is issued for a heatwave when the maximum temperature is expected to be between 40°C and 42°C for two consecutive days.
The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) had warned of a likely spike in temperatures globally this year due to the warming El Nino event. Climate models have predicted that El Nino is on the horizon, which could lead to severe heatwaves and droughts in many countries, including India. The IMD has predicted a 70 per cent chance of El Nino in India and warned that it could affect the monsoon, with the impact felt during the second half of the season. El Nino will mean extreme weather around the globe, making it ‘very likely’ that the world will exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming. The hottest year in recorded history, 2016, was driven by a major El Nino.