Kolkata, Mumbai in top 10 climate change risk cities

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SummaryChicago, London, St Petersburg, Paris and Madrid are the only five cities classified as "low risk"

Bangladeshi capital Dhaka has topped a global list of cities facing the highest climate change risks in the coming decades, while Indian metropolis Kolkata is ranked seventh, Mumbai eighth and Delhi at 20th.

Manila, the capital city of The Philippines, was ranked second in the British risk consultancy Maplecroft's fifth annual 'Climate Change and Environmental Risk Atlas 2013', while Bangkok, Yangon, Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City came third, fourth, fifth and sixth respectively.

Chicago, London, St Petersburg, Paris and Madrid are the only five cities classified as "low risk".

Dhaka came top in the ranking of 50 cities by Maplecroft, specialising in risk analysis, as the changing temperatures and weather systems are forecast to take hold in the country in the coming decades.

Maplecroft's Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI) classifies seven cities as "extreme risk," out of a list of 50 that were chosen for their current and future importance in global business, Daily Star newspaper reported today.

The CCVI looks at exposure to extreme weather events such as drought, cyclones, wildfires and storm surges, which translate into water stress, loss of crops and land lost to the sea.

With a strong economic growth of above 5 per cent forecast for countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia and India in the next few years, the relevance of climate change to populations and business in the major commercial centres should not be underplayed, according to Maplecroft.

The firm said extreme risk cities may see an increase in frequency and severity of key hydrological and meteorological events.

Other cities classed as "high risk" in the CCVI are Lagos, Nigeria (10); Johannesburg, South Africa (13); Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (21); and Hong Kong (14), Guangzhou (18), Shenzhen (19), Wuhan (23) and Shanghai (24), China.

New York, which took the full brunt of Superstorm Sandy, is ranked 41 of the 50 cities.

Maplecroft is a global risk and strategy consulting firm based in Bath, the UK.

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