Increase in temperatures will cut short lives, says "expert"

What a lot of rubbish. It's cold that is bad for you. Deaths are much higher in winter. Another "modelling" exercise, no doubt. New Nostradamus also has a laugh at this "study"

A GLOBAL temperature rise of 2C by 2050 would result in increased loss of life, a new Queensland study has found. Scientists from the Queensland University of Technology and the CSIRO examined the "years of life lost" due to climate change, focusing on Brisbane.

"A two-degree increase in temperature in Brisbane between now and 2050 would result in an extra 381 years of life lost per year in Brisbane," lead researcher Associate Professor Adrian Barnett, from the university's Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, said.

"A two-degree increase in temperature is the figure in the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says is dangerous, but could be reached unless more aggressive measures are undertaken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions."

Prof Barnett said the "years of life lost" measurement gives greater weight to deaths at younger ages instead of focusing only on elderly people. "We suspected that many temperature-related deaths were in the elderly, which would reduce the public health importance of temperature compared with other issues," he said. "In fact, we found the opposite, with a surprisingly high years of life lost figure."

Prof Barnett said that an increase of more than two degrees would be catastrophic. "A four-degree increase in temperature would result in an extra 3242 years of life lost per year in Brisbane."

Interestingly, the study found that a one-degree increase would result in a decrease in the number of lives lost. This is believed to be because the increase in heat-related years of life lost are offset by the decrease in cold-related years of life lost. The researchers said cold-related deaths were significant, even in a city with Brisbane's warm climate.

And many deaths could be avoided if people had better insulation in their houses. "Many houses in Brisbane are built of thin planks of wood and are poorly insulated, which means the occupants are exposed to whatever the temperature is outside," Prof Barnett said.

The researchers believed that while their work was focused on Brisbane, it contained helpful information to decision-makers in other areas as well.

The study has been published in the journal Nature Climate Change.


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