Global cholera surge likely accelerated by climate change, warns WHO

Geneva, SANA- The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that climate change has led to an “unprecedented” cholera outbreak, the largest and deadliest worldwide this year.

“The map is under threat (from cholera) everywhere,” Dr. Philippe Barboza, Team Lead for Cholera and Epidemic Diarrheal Diseases., told Reuters.

The situation is quite unprecedented, for not only we are seeing more outbreaks, but these outbreaks are larger and more deadly than the ones we have seen in past years,” said Dr. Barboza.

He added “This increasing number of cholera outbreaks is occurring after several years of regular reduction in the number of cases and deaths.”

Dr. Barboza explained that all the “usual factors” had played their part in the global uptick of cholera in 2022, not least conflict and mass displacement.

Added to this was the “very visible impact” of climate change, he insisted.

“Most of these larger outbreaks and the fact that they are simultaneously occurring – which makes the situation much more complex – is a direct impact of the increase in adverse climate troubles.”

The cholera crisis has been playing out across the Horn of Africa and the Sahel accompanied by “major floods, unprecedented monsoons (and) a succession of cyclones”, the WHO cholera expert said.

The available data shows that cases of infection occurred in about 30 countries, while in the past five years, on average, less than 20 countries reported cholera cases.

Ruaa al-Jazaeri

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