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London - Extreme heat is the worst climate hazard facing the world’s cities, according to the environmental disclosure non-profit organization CDP. July 2023 was the hottest month recorded in human history. Heat-related hazards include drought and the risk of wildfires.

CDP has named extreme heat as the worst climate hazard for the world’s cities, announced a statement. The non-profit organization runs a global environmental disclosure system for companies, cities, states and regions. Its latest findings show that 80% per cent of the 1,090 cities that reported their environmental data through CDP-ICLEI Track in 2022 said they face “significant climate hazards”, with more than two thirds already being “significantly impacted” by them, writes the statement.

Just over half (51 per cent) of the reporting cities reported extreme heat as a hazard, making it the most widely reported climate hazard. Significant heat-related hazards reported by cities to CDP-ICLEI Track include drought (35 per cent of cities) and the risk of wildfires (19 per cent). July 2023 was the hottest month ever recorded in human history. 

Of cities that reported climate hazards, 179 cities in North America reported extreme heat as a climate hazard, followed by 153 cities in Europe and the UK, and 86 cities in Asia Pacific. CDP notes that reporting data through CDP-ICLEI Track remains relatively low for cities in Africa, the Middle East and certain in Asia, which are areas particularly affected by extreme heat. According to the analysis, the impact of extreme heat is greatest among the elderly (reported by 88 per cent of cities), low-income households (67 per cent), children and young people (63 per cent), and marginalised communities (45 per cent). 

Maia Kutner, CDP Global Director for Cities, States and Regions, said in the statement that recent months have given an insight into what the future holds for the planet. “Fire after fire after fire devouring homes, livelihoods and nature from Hawaii to China; the single hottest month ever recorded in human history; and the warmest reported ocean temperature. All of which, in years to come, will seem unremarkable,” she commented. ce/em