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Summer Heat Is Making Some Cities Unlivable

Updated: Sep 4, 2018

On Wednesday July 18 (India time), a woman named Rehmati gripped the doctors table in New Delhi. She could hardly hold herself upright, the pain in her stomach was so intense. She had traveled for 26 hours in an extremely hot bus to visit her husband.

Rehmati, in pink, at the hospital in New Delhi


The pain was caused by the intense heat. In New Delhi, the temperature was at 111 degrees Fahrenheit, and Rehmati was already in an emergency room. The doctor, Reena Yadav, didn't know what exactly had made Rehmati sick, but it was definitely linked to the heat.

Effects of Extreme Heat

Extreme heat has been known to kill in many scenarios. In Pakistan, in May, it killed by the dozens. But as many of South Asia’s already-scorching cities get even hotter, scientists and economists are warning of a quieter, more far-reaching danger: extreme heat is devastating the health and livelihoods of tens of millions more.

Cause of Extreme Heat

Of course, this is caused by climate change. As noted on the Urban Issues: An Effect of Climate Change page, (and put into further detail on the Worse Extreme Weather: An Effect of Climate Change page), heat waves are affecting cities, especially near the equator. This means that this type of illness will get more and more common.

Future Predictions

New studies done by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology suggests that future temperatures may be so hot that people exposed to the outdoors for 6 hours or more may die in New Delhi.


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