A latest United Nations (UN) report warned of dire consequences for billions of people if global warming continues unchecked. Previous climate models suggested that it would take nearly another century of relentless carbon pollution to generate heat waves beyond the absolute limit of human tolerance.
But updated projections from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warn of unprecedented deadly heat waves on the near horizon. The IPCC has prepared a 4,000-page report, which will be published in February 2022, the AFP news agency reported.
The report states that if the world warms by 1.5 degrees Celsius – 0.4 degrees above the current level – 14% of the population will be exposed to strong heat waves at least once every five years – ” a significant increase in the amplitude of heat waves “. Raising by half a degree would add 1.7 billion more people.
The most affected will be the mega-cities of the developing world which themselves generate additional heat from Karachi to Kinshasa, from Manila to Mumbai, from Lagos to Manaus, according to the report.
According to the report, it is easier to survive a high temperature day if the air is dry than it is to survive a low temperature day with very high humidity. This steam bath mix has its own test, known as wet bulb temperature.
Experts say healthy human adults cannot survive if humid temperatures (TW) exceed 35 degrees Celsius, even in the shade with an unlimited supply of drinking water.
“When humid temperatures are extremely high, there is so much moisture in the air that sweating becomes ineffective in removing excess heat from the body. At some point, maybe after six hours or more, this will lead to organ failure and death in the absence of access to artificial cooling, ”said Colin Raymond, lead author of a recent study on heat waves in the Gulf.