Nigeria was 80 times more likely to experience floods due to climate change, study finds

During October, Nigeria suffered from massive floods, which was the worst episode of seasonal floods in over a decade. These floods caused over 600 deaths in total while displacing over 1.3 million people. Nigerians lost their homes, their family members, and the lands which they were using for agriculture. Researchers now found upon a thorough analysis of the situation that the country was already highly susceptible to devastating floods. The study showed that Nigeria was 80 times more likely to have such floods due to the climate changes increasing the possibility of their occurrence. 

Global warming is a massive concern for the world, without any question. But there are still many doubts related to the events which explain global warming. Many people believe that there is still way too much time for the ice at the poles to melt. This also includes many political leaders who still believe that global warming and climate change are the problems of the future. But the current natural events are suggesting against this belief and are showing the direct impacts of climate change. The study conducted by climate scientists from different countries under the World Weather Attribution (WWA) group has shown the direct correlation between global warming and natural events such as heavy rains and floods. The study shows that just a 1°C increase in the global temperature due to global warming has caused severe repercussions for human societies across the globe. The floods in Nigeria are exactly the result of these repercussions. It showed that from June to November, the seasonal floods caused the deaths of hundreds and displaced almost two million people. 

These groups of climate researchers used computer simulations based on weather data to understand the probability of heavy rains and floods in the region. The data before global warming and after global warming were compared to predict how much global warming has impacted the climate. Based on this, the researchers found that such heavy rain is almost impossible with the presence of human alterations to the atmosphere. Researchers also said that people can expect such events now after each decade. 

These outcomes are alarming for emerging and developing countries. Especially because, these countries generally do not have such industrial development to have a significant emission of greenhouse gasses to contribute to global warming. The study showed that Nigerians had little to no resources to tackle such devastating natural disasters. The lack of resources to rescue the people stuck in floods led to the loss of hundreds of lives. It also affected the people who were forced to leave their homes and move to new locations. Along with this, thousands of acres of farmland got destroyed after the floodwater moved the fertile soil. Prof Maarten van Aalst, the director of the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Center said that the study shows that climate change has significantly increased the likelihood of natural disasters, which is majorly a result of human activities. He further stated that through science we can completely understand the effect of climate change and its consequences which the developing and poor countries are facing.