Heat-related deaths expected to rise

New study predicts sharp increase in climate-change-related deaths in UK

The foggy, rainy United Kingdom is not the first place one thinks of when thinking of warm climates, yet it is expected to have a sharp rise over the next four decades in heat-related deaths due to climate change, a study says.

Annually, heat-related deaths in the UK are predicted to go up by 257 percent by the year 2050, with the elderly being most at risk, according to the UK’s Guardian newspaper.

Authors of the study, published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, predicted that by the 2020s, if nothing changes significantly, UK heat-related deaths will increase by 66 percent. By the 2080s, a 535 percent increase in such deaths is anticipated.

“During periods of warmer weather, higher temperatures can lead to greater-than-usual stress on the body caused by heat and higher levels of air pollution, which can aggravate the symptoms of those with chronic conditions, such as cardiovascular and respiratory conditions,” said Dr. Sotiris Vardoulakis, co-author of the study.