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How climate change is hitting Europe: three graphics reveal health impacts

A growing body of research reveals the deaths and diseases linked to rising temperatures across the continent. 

#GlobalWarming is costing lives, deepening health inequality and driving the spread of disease-carrying ticks and parasites across Europe, according to a major report.

The report reviewed hundreds of studies on the health effects of #climatechange — as well as the actions being taken in response — in Europe. #climate and health researcher Rachel Lowe and her colleagues tracked 42 indicators, including those on heat-related deaths, the spread of infectious diseases and trends in research on health and climate change.

“We really need some drastic action to be taken by European countries to help keep the European population, and also populations across the globe, safe from the health impacts of climate change,” says Lowe, who is at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center and at the Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies in Spain.

The report, published last month in Lancet Public Health1, is the second — after one published in 20222 — from a study called ‘The Lancet Countdown: Health and Climate Change in Europe’.

“The report emphasizes the alarming increase in mortality and morbidity linked to rising temperatures, and the proliferation of climate-sensitive diseases,” says Ana Raquel Nunes, a health and environment researcher at the University of Warwick, UK.

Researchers say that further studies should take a holistic approach to the climate–health nexus. “You can’t treat all these health impacts of climate change in isolation,” says Ruth Doherty, a climate-change and health researcher at the University of Edinburgh, UK. “We really need to know about how these multiple exposures affect the population.”

In three graphics, Nature outlines how a warmer world is affecting health and research across Europe.

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