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The Temperature of Kolkata: A Comprehensive Guide

kolkata temperature

kolkata temperature

Kolkata, formerly known as Calcutta, is the capital city of the Indian state of West Bengal. It is a vibrant and bustling metropolis that is known for its rich cultural heritage, historical landmarks, and mouth-watering cuisine. However, one aspect of Kolkata that often goes unnoticed is its unique climate and temperature patterns. In this article, we will delve into the temperature of Kolkata, exploring its seasonal variations, extreme weather events, and the impact of climate change. So, let’s dive in and uncover the fascinating world of Kolkata’s temperature!

The Seasonal Temperature Variations in Kolkata

Kolkata experiences a tropical wet-and-dry climate, characterized by hot and humid summers and mild winters. The city is located in the Gangetic plain, which influences its temperature patterns. Here is a breakdown of the seasonal temperature variations in Kolkata:

Summer (March to May)

During the summer months, Kolkata experiences scorching temperatures, with the mercury often soaring above 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit). The humidity levels are also high, making the weather extremely uncomfortable. The city witnesses heatwaves during this period, which can have adverse effects on human health. It is essential to stay hydrated and take necessary precautions to beat the heat.

Monsoon (June to September)

The monsoon season brings relief from the sweltering heat of summer. Kolkata receives heavy rainfall during this period, with an average annual precipitation of around 1,582 millimeters (62.28 inches). The temperature drops slightly, ranging between 25 to 35 degrees Celsius (77 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit). The monsoon showers rejuvenate the city, turning it into a lush green paradise.

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Autumn (October to November)

Autumn in Kolkata is characterized by pleasant weather, with temperatures ranging between 20 to 30 degrees Celsius (68 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit). The humidity levels decrease, and the city experiences clear skies and gentle breezes. This is considered an ideal time to visit Kolkata, as the weather is neither too hot nor too cold.

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Winter (December to February)

Winter in Kolkata is relatively mild compared to other parts of India. The temperature ranges between 12 to 25 degrees Celsius (54 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit). While the days are pleasant, the nights can get chilly, especially in January. It is advisable to carry a light jacket or sweater when visiting Kolkata during this season.

Extreme Weather Events in Kolkata

While Kolkata generally experiences a predictable climate, it is not immune to extreme weather events. Here are some notable instances of extreme weather in the city:

Cyclones

Kolkata is prone to cyclones, particularly during the pre-monsoon and post-monsoon periods. Cyclone Amphan, which struck in May 2020, was one of the most devastating cyclones to hit the region in recent history. It caused widespread destruction, including damage to infrastructure, uprooting of trees, and flooding in low-lying areas.

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Heatwaves

Heatwaves are a common occurrence in Kolkata during the summer months. In 2015, the city experienced a severe heatwave, with temperatures reaching a record high of 44.6 degrees Celsius (112.3 degrees Fahrenheit). Heatwaves pose a significant risk to human health, leading to heat exhaustion, heatstroke, and even death. It is crucial to take necessary precautions, such as staying indoors, keeping hydrated, and avoiding direct exposure to the sun during such extreme weather events.

The Impact of Climate Change on Kolkata’s Temperature

Climate change is a global phenomenon that is affecting cities worldwide, including Kolkata. Here are some ways in which climate change is impacting the temperature of Kolkata:

Rising Temperatures

Climate change has led to a gradual increase in temperatures in Kolkata. The city has been experiencing hotter summers, with more frequent heatwaves. Rising temperatures not only make the weather uncomfortable but also have adverse effects on human health, agriculture, and the environment.

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Changing Rainfall Patterns

Climate change has also resulted in changing rainfall patterns in Kolkata. The city has witnessed an increase in the frequency and intensity of rainfall events, leading to waterlogging and flooding in low-lying areas. These extreme rainfall events pose a threat to the city’s infrastructure and disrupt daily life.

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Sea Level Rise

Kolkata is located on the eastern bank of the Hooghly River, which is a distributary of the Ganges. As a result, the city is vulnerable to sea-level rise caused by climate change. Rising sea levels can lead to saltwater intrusion into freshwater sources, affecting the availability of clean drinking water for the city’s residents.

Q&A

1. What is the average temperature in Kolkata?

The average temperature in Kolkata ranges from 25 to 35 degrees Celsius (77 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit) during the monsoon season and drops to 12 to 25 degrees Celsius (54 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit) in winter.

2. Does Kolkata experience extreme weather events?

Yes, Kolkata experiences extreme weather events such as cyclones and heatwaves. Cyclone Amphan, which struck in May 2020, caused significant damage to the city, while severe heatwaves have been recorded in the past.

3. How does climate change affect Kolkata’s temperature?

Climate change has led to rising temperatures in Kolkata, resulting in hotter summers and more frequent heatwaves. It has also caused changing rainfall patterns and increased the risk of flooding in the city.

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4. What precautions should one take during a heatwave in Kolkata?

During a heatwave in Kolkata, it is essential to stay indoors, keep hydrated, and avoid direct exposure to the sun. Wearing light and loose-fitting clothing can also help in staying cool.

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5. Is Kolkata at risk of sea-level rise?

Yes, Kolkata is at risk of sea-level rise due to its location on the eastern bank of the Hooghly River. Rising sea levels can lead to saltwater intrusion and affect the availability of clean drinking water in the city.

Summary

Kolkata’s temperature exhibits distinct seasonal variations, with scorching summers, mild winters, and heavy monsoon rainfall. The city is prone to extreme weather events such as cyclones and heatwaves, which can have severe consequences. Climate change is further exacerbating these temperature patterns, leading to rising temperatures, changing rainfall patterns, and the risk of sea-level rise. It is crucial for the city to adapt to these changes and take necessary measures to mitigate the impact of climate change. By understanding and addressing the temperature challenges, Kolkata can continue to thrive

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