With every 1.8 degree (1 degree Celsius) increase in global average annual temperature from man-made climate change, about a billion or so people will end up in areas too warm day-in, day-out to be habitable without cooling technology, according to ecologist Marten Scheffer of Wageningen University in the Netherlands, co-author of the study.
How many people will end up at risk depends on how much heat-trapping carbon dioxide emissions are reduced and how fast the world population grows.
Under the worst-case scenarios for population growth and for carbon pollution — which many climate scientists say is looking less likely these days — the study in Monday’s journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences predicts about 3.5 billion people will live in extremely hot areas. That’s a third of the projected 2070 population.
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May 08, 2020