In 10 seconds? Researchers say that people living in US cities are paying “an urban heat penalty” of extra hot hours. The study comes on the back of a 2021 paper warning that city-dwellers are increasingly exposed to extreme heat.
We have heatwaves every year. What’s the urgency? Firstly, the human cost: Last summer’s North West heatwave in the US and Canada caused nearly 800 confirmed and more estimated deaths. Researchers using climate models warn that the incidents when the combination of heat and humidity becomes intolerable for the human body, will start occurring in the middle of next century. As to the material cost, heatwaves lead to high energy and water consumption, and may reduce global GDP growth by 20% by 2100 due to lost workdays.