Research estimates that 37% of high-temperature deaths are due to climate change
According to the latest research that calculates the cost of climate change to humans, more than one-third of high-temperature deaths in the world each year are directly attributable to global warming.
But scientists say this is only a small part of the overall climate loss-more people are dying from other extreme weather such as storms, floods, and droughts that are exacerbated by global warming-and the number of deaths from high temperatures will increase exponentially as temperatures rise .
Dozens of researchers studied high temperature deaths in 732 cities around the world from 1991 to 2018, and calculated that 37% were caused by high temperatures caused by man-made warming. According to a study published on Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.
The lead author of the study said that this is equivalent to about 9,700 people from these cities each year, but the number is much higher globally.
Ana Vicedo-Cabrera, an epidemiologist at the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Bern, Switzerland, said: “These high-temperature-related deaths are actually preventable. This is directly caused by us.”
1,100 people die each year in the U.S.
The highest proportion of high-temperature deaths caused by climate change are cities in South America. Vicedo-Cabrera pointed out that Southern Europe and South Asia are other hot spots for high temperature deaths related to climate change.
Researchers have found that São Paulo, Brazil, has the highest number of deaths from high temperature related to climate, with an average of 239 people per year.
Studies have found that about 35% of high-temperature deaths in the United States can be attributed to climate change. In approximately 200 cities in the United States, a total of more than 1,100 people die each year, of which 141 people die in New York. Honolulu’s climate change caused the highest percentage of deaths from high temperatures, at 82%.
Scientists used decades of mortality data in 732 cities to draw a curve, detailing how each city’s mortality rate changes with temperature and how the heat-death curve varies from city to city. Vicedo-Cabrera said that due to air conditioning, cultural factors and environmental conditions, some cities are better able to adapt to high temperatures than others.
The researchers then compared the observed temperature with 10 computer models that simulate a world without climate change. The difference is caused by human warming. By applying this scientifically recognized technology to the personalized heat-death curves of 732 cities, the scientists calculated the additional heat-death caused by climate change.
“People continue to demand proof that climate change has affected our health. This attribution study uses the most scientific epidemiological methods to directly answer this question, and the amount of data collected by the author for analysis is impressive,” said University of Wisconsin Global Health Dr. Jonathan Patz, Director of the Institute.
Patz was not involved in the study, and he said that this is one of the first people to detail high-temperature deaths related to climate change, not in the future.