Dangerous Heat Stress to Become More Common by 2100: Report


“Our study shows a broad range of possible scenarios for 2100,” he added. “This shows that the emissions choices we make now still matter for creating a habitable future.”

The research appears at a mix of air temperature and humidity often called the “heat index” that measures influence on the human physique. A “dangerous” warmth index is outlined by the Nationwide Climate Service as 103 F (39.4 C). An “extremely dangerous” warmth index is 124 F (51 C), deemed unsafe to people for any period of time.

“These standards were first created for people working indoors in places like boiler rooms — they were not thought of as conditions that would happen in outdoor, ambient environments. But we are seeing them now,” Vargas Zeppetello mentioned.


The research finds that even when international locations handle to satisfy the Paris Settlement objective of holding warming to 2 C, crossing the “dangerous” threshold shall be three to 10 instances extra frequent by 2100 within the U.S., Western Europe, China and Japan. In that very same state of affairs, harmful days may double by 2100 within the tropics, masking half the yr.

In a worst-case state of affairs wherein emissions stay unchecked till 2100, “extremely dangerous” situations, wherein people shouldn’t be open air for any period of time, may grow to be frequent in international locations nearer to the equator — notably in India and sub-Saharan Africa.

“It’s extremely frightening to think what would happen if 30 to 40 days a year were exceeding the extremely dangerous threshold,” Vargas Zeppetello mentioned. “These are frightening scenarios that we still have the capacity to prevent. This study shows you the abyss, but it also shows you that we have some agency to prevent these scenarios from happening.”

The research makes use of a probability-based methodology to calculate the vary of future situations. As a substitute of utilizing the 4 future emissions pathways included within the Intergovernmental Panel on Local weather Change experiences, the authors use a statistical method that mixes historic information with inhabitants projections, financial development and carbon depth — the quantity of carbon emitted for every greenback of financial exercise — to foretell the seemingly vary of future CO2 concentrations.

The statistical method “gives plausible ranges for carbon emissions and future temperature and has been estimated statistically from and validated against historical data,” mentioned co-author Adrian Raftery, a UW professor of statistics and of sociology with an adjunct appointment in atmospheric sciences.

The authors translated the upper carbon dioxide ranges into a spread of world temperature will increase, then checked out how that will have an effect on world month-to-month climate patterns.

“The number of days with dangerous levels of heat in the mid-latitudes — including the southeastern and central U.S. — will more than double by 2050,” mentioned co-author David Battisti, a professor of atmospheric sciences on the UW. “Even for the very low-end estimates of carbon emissions and climate response, by 2100 much of the tropics will experience ‘dangerous’ levels of heat stress for nearly half the year.”

The outcomes underline the necessity to each scale back future greenhouse gasoline emissions and to guard populations, particularly out of doors employees, in opposition to harmful warmth. The analysis was funded by the Nationwide Institutes of Well being, the James S. McDonnell Basis and the Tamaki Basis.

Supply: Eurekalert


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