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Where More People Will Die -- and Live -- Because of Climate Change

dimanche 19 février 2023, 13:34 , par Slashdot
An anonymous reader shares this thought-provoking article by a graphics reporter at The Washington Post who was part of its Pulitzer Prize-winning Explanatory Reporting team:

The scientific paper published in the June 2021 issue of the journal Nature Climate Change was alarming. Between 1991 and 2018, the peer-reviewed study reported, more than one-third of deaths from heat exposure were linked to global warming. Hundreds of news outlets covered the findings. The message was clear: climate change is here, and it's already killing people. But that wasn't all that was happening. A month later, the same research group, which is based out of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine but includes scientists from dozens of countries, released another peer-reviewed study that told a fuller, more complex story about the link between climate change, temperature and human mortality. The two papers' authors were mostly the same, and they used similar data and statistical methods.

Published in Lancet Planetary Health, the second paper reported that between 2000 and 2019, annual deaths from heat exposure increased. But deaths from cold exposure, which were far more common, fell by an even larger amount. All told, during those two decades the world warmed by about 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit, and some 650,000 fewer people died from temperature exposure....

But whose lives? Projections indicate milder temperatures may indeed spare people in the globe's wealthy north, where it's already colder and people can buy protection against the weather. Yet heat will punish people in warmer, less wealthy parts of the world, where each extra degree of temperature can kill and air conditioning will often remain a fantasy....

What about the long term? A groundbreaking peer-reviewed study, published in November in Harvard's Quarterly Journal of Economics, gives us a glimpse. In the study, a team of researchers projected how mortality from temperature would change in the future. The worldwide temperature-linked mortality rate is projected to stay about the same, but you can see enormous geographic variation: colder, wealthier countries do well, while hotter, poorer countries suffer.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.
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