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Why Extreme Heat Plus Pollution Is a Deadly Combination

Understanding what happens when they coincide

Two climate-related health risks are converging with alarming frequency: record high temperatures, and air pollution from things like car exhaust and wildfire smoke. Separately, these conditions can make people acutely sick snd exacerbate existing health problems. But what happens when they coincide?

Recently, researchers at the University of Southern California set out to answer that question. Their results, based on mortality data from California between 2014 and 2019 and published at the end of June in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, indicate that the combined mortality risk of extreme temperatures and thick pollution is significantly more than the sum of their individual effects.

A person’s odds of dying increased 6.1 percent on extreme temperature days and 5 percent on extreme pollution days compared with non-extreme days. But on days with both extreme conditions, the risk of death jumped by 21 percent.

Please select this link to read the complete article from TIME.

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