The 2018 Environmental Performance Indicators and the 2018 Global Climate Risk Index together make a distressing argument: that India’s ‘environmental performance’ is the third worst among 180 countries even as it is the 14th most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

Many of these effects have already assailed different parts of the country, including heavy rains, floods and intense tropical cyclones, more hot and dry days and longer periods of low productivity, coastal flooding, etc. In turn, they have heightened the risk of certain problems in India, such as of vector-borne diseases, crop failures, food shortage, lower nutritional quality, and further endangered threatened the health and livelihoods coastal communities and ecosystems.

States that are further inland have shown up to be the most vulnerable. Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, both with large tribal populations and both thought to have experienced a living-standards decline of over 9%, are the two most vulnerable, followed by Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra.

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