New Yorkers' health will be affected by climate change, new study shows

New York will be hotter in the future, and some New Yorkers could be sicker as a result, according to a study to be released at an event on June 25th hosted by the Earth Institute at Columbia University and Columbia's Mailman School of Public Health. The study, involving three years of research by Columbia's New York Climate and Health Project (NYCHP), investigated the health impacts of climate change scenarios in the region. On Friday June 25, the authors will launch the study with a summary and workshop on its major findings.

In the future we can look forward to more and longer air quality alerts, more heat stress, and illness or deaths related to these, according to project director Joyce Rosenthal of the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Mailman School. "Some neighborhoods will suffer more, especially poorer neighborhoods with less greenery and more asphalt, which can create a heat island effect." The study, officially titled Modeling Heat and Air Quality Impacts of Changing Urban Land Uses and Climate, looked at climate and health projections through 2080.

"Even if there is no climate catastrophe in our century, incremental change is happening now and New Yorkers should start thinking about what that means and how to adapt," says Steve Cohen, head of the Earth Institute's New York City research initiative. The June 25 event will provide a chance for scientists, members of government, and others interested in the implications of climate change to discuss the study's findings.

"Our interdisciplinary group of researchers has developed and tested ground-breaking methods for predicting local temperature and air quality changes due to climate and land use changes over the coming century, and for assessing related health impacts," adds Patrick Kinney, associate professor of Environmental Health Sciences at the Mailman School, principal investigator of the study and an expert in

Contact: Jennifer Freeman
The Earth Institute at Columbia University

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