Tuesday, February 18   Sign in or Register
Evangelical Focus
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud

Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.

Should Christians join social protests?



Nature Climate Change

Deadly heat waves will threaten 48% of world’s population by 2100

One third of the world now faces seasons of extreme heat. “For heat waves, our options are now between bad or terrible”, study says.

SOURCES Nature AUTHOR Evangelical Focus 23 JUNE 2017 09:30 h GMT+1
Photo: Unsplash (CC)

Nearly a third of the world’s population is now exposed to climatic conditions that produce deadly heat waves.

The accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere makes it “almost inevitable” that vast areas of the planet will face rising fatalities from high temperatures, new research has found.

By 2100, this percentage is projected to increase to 48% under a scenario with drastic reductions of greenhouse gas emissions, and 74% under a scenario of growing emissions. An increasing threat to human life from excess heat now seems almost inevitable, but will be greatly aggravated if greenhouse gases are not considerably reduced”, the study says.



According to Camilo Mora, an academic at the University of Hawaii and lead author of the research, “for heatwaves, our options are now between bad or terrible.”

The study, published in Nature Climate Change, analyses documented lethal heat events to identify the climatic conditions associated with human death and then quantified the current and projected occurrence of such deadly climatic conditions worldwide.

They reviewed papers published between 1980 and 2014, and found 783 cases of excess human mortality associated with heat from 164 cities in 36 countries.


Heat waves are a worldwide threat.

Based on the climatic conditions of those lethal episodes, researchers identified a global threshold beyond which daily mean surface air temperature and relative humidity become deadly.



Mora’s team looked at heat waves dating back to 1980, including the European heatwave of 2003, which fueled forest fires in several countries and caused the River Danube in Serbia to plummet so far that submerged second world war tanks and bombs were revealed.

Officially, an estimated 20,000 people died in Europe that year; although a subsequent study suggested the number was as high as 70,000. The study also talks about the 10,000 who died in Moscow due to scorching weather in 2010.

However, most heat-related deaths do not occur during such widely-covered disasters. A crucial factor, experts say, is the humidity level combined with the heat.

Hyperthermia, an excess of body heat, can lead to heat stroke and a potential inflammatory response that can kill. “Your sweat doesn’t evaporate if it is very humid, so heat accumulates in your body instead. The blood rushes to the skin to cool you down so there’s less blood going to the organs”, Mora explains.



“Dying in a heatwave is like being slowly cooked, it’s pure torture. The young and elderly are at particular risk, but we found that this heat can kill soldiers, athletes, everyone”, he adds.

Elevated temperatures and dry conditions have been exacerbated by the clearing of trees, which provide shade and cooling moisture, in urban areas. Government heat warnings and the increased use of air conditioning has helped reduce deaths, but this was not a viable long-term solution.


Drinking fountains in Barcelona, Spain. / Pixabay

The most important thing is to prevent new heat waves and for that, scientists recommend to consume less, emit less greenhouse gases and plant trees to cool the cities.



Earlier this month, Donald Trump announced he will withdraw the USA from the historic Paris climate change agreement.

“The science of climate change is so solid that for him to pull out from from that agreement, knowing the consequences of that for humanity, is just the definition of what I find stupid, I don’t mean any offense there”, Mora points out.

“We are destroying ecosystems like it’s nobody’s business. How is it that we can expect anything good to come out of it?”, he concludes.




    If you want to comment, or


YOUR ARE AT: - - Deadly heat waves will threaten 48% of world’s population by 2100
Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels

An interview with the socio-political representative of the European Evangelical Alliance about how evangelical Christians work at the heart of the European Union.

Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

Testimony: Wildfires near Athens Testimony: Wildfires near Athens

Nico Spies, a Christian worker in Athens, gives details about the wildfires in Greece.

Photos: European Week of Prayer Photos: European Week of Prayer

Christians joined the Evangelical Alliance Week of Prayer in dozens of European cities as local churches came together to worship God. 

Photos: Students at ‘Revive Europe’ Photos: Students at ‘Revive Europe’

Photos of the student conference that brought together 3,000 European Christians in Germany. ‘Revive our hearts, revive our universities, revive Europe’.

Min19: Childhood, family and the church Min19: Childhood, family and the church

The first evangelical congress on childhood and family was held in Madrid. Pictures of the event, November 1-2.

What is Paul's main message in Galatians? What is Paul's main message in Galatians?

“God the Father, the Son and the Spirit are at work in our lives, through the gospel, to bring us into a relationship with theTrinity”, Peter Mead, Director of Cor Deo, says.

Why are some Christians opposed to higher education? Why are some Christians opposed to higher education?

“I can understand why people are cautious about higher education, but we need to understand that education in itself is not the danger”, says Daryl McCarthy.

Christian candidacies in Taiwan increased by 40% in 2020 election Christian candidacies in Taiwan increased by 40% in 2020 election

Many hope their effort will inspire a new generation of political representatives with a strong Christian faith. “God has a long-term plan”.

Video: Highlights of ‘Revive Europe’ Video: Highlights of ‘Revive Europe’

A video summary of the student conference that gathered 3,000 in Karlsruhe, Germany. 6 days in 6 minutes.

Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube

EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.