A new study has found that global warming has led to over one-third of the world’s heat deaths.
After analyzing heat deaths from 732 global cities from 1991 to 2018 for the Nature Climate Change report, researchers concluded that 37 percent of those deaths were due to human-caused warming. That’s around 9,700 people per year from those cities alone—meaning, the paper doesn’t take every place in the world into account.
“These are deaths related to heat that actually can be prevented. It is something we directly cause,” Ana Vicedo-Cabrera, an epidemiologist at the Institute of Social and Preventative Medicine at the University of Bern in Switzerland, told the Associated Press.
South America saw the largest number of heat deaths due to climate change, with Sao Paulo, Brazil averaging the most, at 239 per year. Southern Europe and southern Asia were also high up on the list. The U.S. as a whole saw over 1,100 heat deaths across 200 cities, with 35 percent of those deaths due to climate change. New York had the most with 141 deaths; and in Honolulu, 82 percent of heat deaths were because of climate change.
As temperatures rise, heat death numbers will continue to climb. The study found that more people also die from extreme weather events, like storms, flooding, and droughts.