Severe cyclonic storm Phailin currently on a path towards the coast of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh

Press release - October 12, 2013
New Delhi, October 12, 2013: Greenpeace shares the concern for the people of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh who face the devastation that will be caused by Phailin, a very severe cyclonic storm. People are facing the destruction of their properties and livelihoods and Greenpeace hopes the storm will pass with the least possible destruction.

Speaking from Odisha, Dr. Biswajit Mohanty a Greenpeace India Board member said, "Our thoughts are with the people of this region as their homes are hit by Phailin. Sadly, such intense and destructive storms are likely to become more normal in the future as global warming intensifies. Even a small increase in the ocean's warmth can turn tropical disturbances into hurricanes or pump up an existing storm's power and add to its rain fall."

"Cyclones are already one of the world's most devastating natural disasters, causing catastrophic loss of life and billions of dollars in damages. Since governments have refused to deal with climate change and instead allow the pumping of ever more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, global temperatures will continue to increase. Scientists expect tropical cyclones in some regions to become more intense with increased rainfall and wind speed, posing an even greater threat."[1]

Climate change won't be stopped without action, by governments and by people demanding change. The recent peaceful protest by Greenpeace activists is an example of action to create change. They, along with a freelance photographer and videographer where arrested at gunpoint by Russian security forces three weeks ago while peacefully protesting against oil giant Gazprom's drilling for oil in the Arctic. They are currently being held in prison in Murmansk and facing grave charges for doing what every concerned citizen should, pointing out the insanity of drilling for more oil, for more of the fossil fuels that are causing climate change and fuelling extreme weather events in the first place.

Phailin looks likely to be the strongest tropical cyclone to affect India in 14 years, since the 1999 Odisha Cyclone, which peaked at Category 5 strength and drove a storm surge of 8 meters onto the coast which killing 9,658 people and leaving $2.5 billion in damage (1999 dollars), India's most expensive and fourth deadliest tropical cyclone in the past 100 years.[2]

"The climate change ball is rolling and people will suffer the consequences of the global warming already in the system. But there is still time to avoid more significant harmful climate impacts. But only if Governments shift urgently to clean energy sources that will cut our polluting greenhouse gas emissions. Here in India, renewable energy is already proving itself not only as a means to provide clean basic energy for the growing aspirations of a developing nation, but a massive expansion of these technologies is urgently needed," Dr. Mohanty added further.

[1] Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation, Special Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change:


For further information:

Shashwat Raj, Senior Media Officer, Greenpeace India, 09971110144,

Abhishek Pratap, Senior Campaigner, Greenpeace India, 09845610749,