Countless people will die by 2100 just from the heat alone.
There are still an abundance of people that deny that climate change exists, the United States president being one of them, and yet there is overwhelming evidence that not only suggests otherwise but warns of the impending doom humans will soon face. One such piece of evidence was recently put into interactive map form by Climate Central, an independent organization made up of scientists and journalists researching about climate change and is impact on the public.
The map features the most recent results of research conducted to determine how hot the average high summer temperatures in every major city in the world and it’s not looking promising. The map includes an option to see what would happen if carbon emissions remained as they are today or if they were moderately cut. By “moderate emissions cuts,” the group means that if the world cut their emissions roughly in half, which would still lead to alarming rises in temperature.
For example, if you currently live in New York City, the average high temperature today is 81.8 degrees Fahrenheit. However, by 2100 your summers would start to look like those of Juarez, Mexico, whose summers reach 94 degrees regularly. That’s more than 12 degrees difference in about 80 years, and that’s not even the biggest jump. For those whose temperatures are already sweltering, like Doha, Qatar, there isn’t a city to compare their future temperature to, which would be 116.3 degrees by 2100. If you would like to interact with the map and check your own city, visit this website here.
These figures are especially concerning when considering the fact that global emissions are only set to get worse as time goes on, something that this map doesn’t account for. Though agreements like the Paris Climate Agreement are critical to reducing emissions from the world’s biggest contributors, it’s modest and the U.S. is not even participating in it.
For reference, take the 2003 European heatwave as an example. This heatwave took place between July and August 2003 and most European cities reached near or above 100 degrees, sometimes for as long as 8 days straight. As a result, 70,000 people died from heat-related causes, whether it was from heat stroke or fires caused by the lethal heat, and that was just from a rise of a few degrees for two months. By the time 2100 comes around, the death toll from people dying in relation to the increased heat will likely be immeasurable.
Those living with the luxury of air conditioning and heating likely don’t realize how detrimental the rising temperature will be, but there are many in the world that will suffer as a result. The elderly and children are most prone to death during heatwaves and 2100 is not that far in the future. In addition to reducing your own emissions, get involved by calling your congressmen and speaking with them about the importance of environmentally-friendly legislation.
If you would like access to the interactive map to locate your city and the future of its weather, visit this website here.