Our earth’s climate is changing at an accelerating pace. Climate change affects not only the planet but also the health of human beings. Climate and weather change is a significant threat to human health. Climate change affects the environment that provides us with clean air, food, water, and shelter. So, climate change directly affects human health and human well-being. 

Recent research found that long-term heating is associated with seasonal deaths. Over a decade, the summer months experience more deaths than in winter months. The study says over 51 years, the annual temperature increased by more than 1°c in Australia and found that the last decade (2011 to 2020) was the hottest in history. 

How the Research Works

The study used the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, the Australian Bureau of Statistics, and other sources and gathered data of people aged 55 between 1968 and 2018. Later it compared the death rates in summer and winter and found in 1968, and there were approximately 73 deaths in summer and 100 deaths in winter. Whereas in 2018, the death rate increased to 83 in summer and 100 in winter. 

Summer and winter have a variety of direct and indirect effects on human health. Where winter death rates exceed in the summer months because of infectious diseases like influenza, on the other hand, hot weather can worsen chronic diseases such as heart disease and kidney problems, especially for elderly people. 

By comparing the deaths in the hottest summer with the coldest winter, the study found summer increases the likelihood of seasonal mortality ratio 1:1, which means equal deaths in summer and winter. Summers are expected to become hotter, and it is said to be an early sign of climate change in the future.

How This Research Is Unique 

The study requires 30-50 years of records to accurately show how climate change affects health since climate change occurs slowly. Non-climate factors and health care can also influence health trends. This research and data don’t allow the effects of people’s adaptation to warmer temperatures in the future. 

Ways How Climate Change Impacts Human Health 

  • Temperature impacts 
  • Air quality impacts 
  • Weather condition impacts 
  • Vector-borne diseases 
  • Water-related diseases
  • Food safety and nutrition 
  • Mental health