Sunday, December 10, 2023

We have seen some virus outbreaks in the last few years. Climate change will likely send more our way

In a world plagued by disease, more than two years after a global pandemic, every new outbreak makes headlines.

The world is still battling COVID-19, but Australians have had to raise their heads about the symptoms and risks associated with many other new diseases.

Take the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV), which was first detected in the country’s southeast earlier this year.

The mosquito-borne virus is still rare, and is cause for caution rather than alarm.

But this is just one example of the kinds of health challenges scientists say we should expect to see more as the world continues to warm.

“Of course, they are not all at the same level as COVID-19. But the frequency of pandemic events is certainly increasing,” says Paul de Barro, senior principal research scientist at CSIRO.

Mosquito-borne diseases get better as the world warms

The science is clear: Human activity has warmed the world by about 1 degree Celsius since pre-industrial times. With it come more extreme and unpredictable weather events.

The world is facing a major challenge which is known as vector borne diseases. Along with malaria, dengue fever and JEV, the vector is the mosquito.

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Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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