Save Lives – Raise the Temperature

The concept of “Excess Winter Deaths” is straightforward. Winter kills.

You could save 3 people a day from dying in the winter by raising temps 5C.

If the temperature went up 5C in Ontario, it would kill 4 people a day in summer.

If the temperature went up 5C in Ontario, it would save 7 people a day in winter.

In warm seasons, each 5°C increase in daily mean temperature was associated with a 2.5% increase in nonaccidental deaths (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.3% to 3.8%) on the day of exposure (lag 0). In cold seasons, each 5°C decrease in daily temperature was associated with a 3.0% (95% CI 1.8% to 4.2%) increase in nonaccidental deaths, which persisted over 7 days (lag 0-6). The cold-related effects (lag 0-6) were stronger for cardiovascular-related deaths (any cardiovascular death: 4.1%, 95% CI 2.3% to 5.9%; ischemic heart disease: 5.8%, 95% CI 3.6% to 8.1%), especially among people less than 65 years of age (8.0%, 95% CI 3.0% to 13.0%). Conversely, heat most strongly increased respiratory-related deaths during admission to hospital (26.0%, 95% CI 0% to 61.4%).

Across Ontario, each 5°C change in daily temperature was estimated to induce 7 excess deaths per day in cold seasons and 4 excess deaths in warm seasons.

Interpretation: Heat contributed to excess deaths in Ontario, although the effect of cold weather appeared to be greater. Further work is required to better define high-risk subgroups, which might include the homeless and people with inadequately heated housing.

 

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Benefits Of Global Warming

A good article by Bjorn Lomborg.

If our climate conversation managed to include the good along with the bad, we would have a much better understanding of our options. Last week, a study in the prestigious journal Nature revealed just how much CO₂ increases have greened the Earth over the past three decades. Because CO₂ acts as a fertilizer, as much as half of all vegetated land is persistently greener today. This ought to be a cause for great joy.

The biggest study on heat and cold deaths, published last year in Lancet, examined more than 74 million deaths from 384 locations in 13 countries from cold Sweden to hot Thailand. The researchers found that heat causes almost one-half of one percent of all deaths, while more than 7 percent are caused by cold.

Indeed, climate-related deaths have droppedfrom half a million per year in the 1920s to less than 25,000 per year in the 2010s. A recent Nature studyexpecting more severe hurricanes from global warming still found that damages would halve from 0.04 per cent to 0.02 per cent of global GDP, because the increased ferocity would be more than made up by increased prosperity and resilience.

Read the rest.

USA: Heat Kills 9,000 and Cold Kills 144,000

Global warming saves lives! Cold kills way more people than heat does.

Gradually rising temperatures across decades will increase the number of hot days and heat waves. If humans make no attempts whatsoever to adapt—a curious assumption that the report inexplicably relies on almost throughout—the total number of heat-related deaths will rise. But correspondingly, climate change will also reduce the number of cold days and cold spells. That will cut the total number of cold-related deaths.jl9NNsB

Consider a rigorous study published last year in the journal Lancet that examined temperature-related mortality around the globe. The researchers looked at data on more than 74 million deaths in 384 locations across 13 areas: cold countries like Canada and Sweden, temperate nations like Spain, South Korea and Australia, and subtropical and tropical ones like Brazil and Thailand.

The Lancet researchers found that about 0.5%—half a percent—of all deaths are associated with heat, not only from acute problems like heat stroke, but also increased mortality from cardiac events and dehydration.

But more than 7% of deaths are related to cold—counting hypothermia, as well as increased blood pressure and risk of heart attack that results when the body restricts blood flow in response to frigid temperatures.

In the U.S. about 9,000 people die from heat each year but 144,000 die from cold.

A 2009 paper from the European Union expects that the reduction in cold deaths will definitely outweigh extra heat deaths in the 2020s. Even near the end of the century, in the 2080s, the EU study projects an increase in heat deaths of “between 60,000 and 165,000” and a decrease of cold deaths of “between 60,000 and 250,000.” In other words, the effects will probably balance each other out, but warming could save as many as 85,000 lives each year.

An academic paper published two years ago in Environmental Health Perspectives similarly shows that global warming will lead to a net reduction in deaths in both the U.K. and Australia. In England and Wales today, the authors write, statistics show that heat kills 1,500 people and cold kills 32,000. In the 2080s, they calculate that increased heat will kill an additional 3,500. But they find that cold deaths will drop by 10,000. In Australia the projections suggest 700 more heat deaths but 1,600 fewer cold deaths.

Globally, one estimate of the health effects of climate change, published in 2006 by Ecological Economics, shows 400,000 more respiratory deaths (mostly from heat) by midcentury, but 1.8 million fewer cardiovascular deaths (mostly from cold).

NOAA – 759 Low Max Records Broken or Tied in 3 Days – Feb 26 to Feb 28 2015

Ooops:  This post originally said “Low Min”. The values are “Low Max”.

759 Low Max Records Broken or tied in last 3 Days according to the NOAA.

Below is a screenshot showing location and the biggest difference between old record and new record.

The list is just the ones I could capture in a screenshot. Wow. Many records broken by over 20F.

Imagine … the old record was 51F and it is now 23F. A 28F difference.

Some of the records broken were over 100 years old.

Capture

NOAA – 2634 Low Max Records Broken or tied From 2015-02-19 to 2015-02-25

(This is a different post than the Low Min one)

Low Max records track the lowest maximum temperature for the day.

2634 Low Max Records Broken or tied From 2015-02-19 to 2015-02-25 according to the NOAA. (That is 15% of all the measurements for that period)

Below is a screenshot showing location and the biggest difference between old record and new record.

The list is just the ones I could capture in a screenshot. Wow. Many records broken by over 20F.

Imagine … the old record was 34 and it is now 3F. A 31F difference.

Capture

NOAA – 1913 Low Min Records Broken (272 tied) From 2015-02-19 to 2015-02-25

UPDATE #2 – Even more records have been broken.

UPDATE: I also have a blog post on the LOW MAX records.

1913 Low Min Records Broken in Last 7 Days (272 tied)  according to the NOAA.

Below is a screenshot showing location and the biggest difference between old record and new record.

The list is just the ones I could capture in a screenshot. Wow. Many records broken by over 30F.

Imagine … the old record was 15F and it is now -23F. A 38F difference.

Capture

Mastodons Killed By Climate Change: They Froze To Death

“Despite popular belief that North American mastodons were hunted to extinction by Ice Age humans, a new Canadian-led study is claiming that the prehistoric beasts simply froze to death.

“To think of scattered populations of Ice Age people with primitive technology driving huge animals to extinction, to me is almost silly,” said Grant Zazula, chief paleontologist for the Yukon Territory and the study’s lead author.

What the research found was that mastodons died out in the Yukon and Alaska long before humans were even on the scene. Not only that, but northern mastodons died out a full 65,000 years before their cousins in warmer climes to the south.”

Mastodons weren’t hunted to extinction by Ice Age humans — they simply froze to death, new study finds