Study connects climate to 58% of infectious diseases

Researchers looked through the medical literature of established cases of illnesses and found that 218 out of the known 375 human infectious diseases, or 58%, seemed to be made worse by one of 10 types of extreme weather connected to climate change.

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World News

August 12, 2022 - 3:40 PM

Climate hazards have worsened more than half of the hundreds of known infectious diseases in people. PIXABAY.COM

Climate hazards such as flooding, heat waves and drought have worsened more than half of the hundreds of known infectious diseases in people, including malaria, hantavirus, cholera and anthrax, a study says.

Researchers looked through the medical literature of established cases of illnesses and found that 218 out of the known 375 human infectious diseases, or 58%, seemed to be made worse by one of 10 types of extreme weather connected to climate change, according to a study in Monday’s journal Nature Climate Change.

The study mapped out 1,006 pathways from the climate hazards to sick people. In some cases, downpours and flooding sicken people through disease-carrying mosquitos, rats and deer. There are warming oceans and heat waves that taint seafood and other things we eat and droughts that bring bats carrying viral infections to people.

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