Climate change-induced heat stress may claim 330 Israeli lives per summer by 2100
Researchers warn that heat waves in the Eastern Mediterranean likely to occur seven times more often and last three times longer by century’s end
Some 330 people could be dying from heat stress every summer by the century’s end unless meaningful action is taken to reduce global warming gas emissions, Israeli researchers say in a new study.
Existing research has found that the duration of heat waves in the region, which includes Israel, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, and southern Turkey, had already increased six-fold from 1960 to 2010.
The researchers — Assaf Hochman of the Institute of Earth Sciences at Jerusalem’s Hebrew University and two academics from the Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research at Germany’s Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, where Hochman also works — predict that heat waves in the Eastern Mediterranean are likely to occur seven times more often and last three times longer by 2100.
The paper cites research suggesting that the number of very hot days in the coastal Levant (where daytime temperatures peak at 35° Celsius/95° Fahrenheit or more) may increase by more than two months until the end of the 21st century, noting that such changes will occur in an area where populations are growing fast, socioeconomic levels are unstable, and urbanization can make things worse because infrastructure, such as buildings and roads, absorb and re-emit the sun’s heat more than natural environments.
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