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Global warming to increase violent crime in the United States

Source(s):  IOP Science

Recent studies have revealed large and robust correlations between seasonal climate and violent crime rates at regional scales within the continental United States, begging the question of how future climate change will influence violent crime rates. Here, this study combines empirical models from previous studies with 42 state-of-the-art global climate models to make such projections, while accounting for key factors like regionality and seasonality, and appropriately combining multiple of sources of uncertainty. The results indicate that the United States should expect an additional 3.2 [2.1–4.5] or 2.3 [1.5–3.2] million violent crimes between 2020 and 2099, depending on greenhouse gas emissions scenario. The research also reveals critical dependencies of these violent crime projections on various global warming targets, such as those associated with the Paris Agreement (1.5˚C and 2˚C). These results emphasize the often-overlooked socially-mediated impacts of climate change on human health, with an estimated economic cost of $5 billion annually.

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  • Global warming to increase violent crime in the United States
  • Publication date 2020
  • Author(s) Harp, Ryan; Karnauskas, Kristopher
  • Number of pages 23 p.

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