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J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2014 Sep;69(9):1087-91. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glt159. Epub 2013 Oct 24.

Impact of climate change on elder health.

Author information

1
The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, College of Medicine, Reynolds Department of Geriatric Medicine, Oklahoma City. Bruce-Carnes@ouhsc.edu.
2
The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, College of Medicine, Reynolds Department of Geriatric Medicine, Oklahoma City.
3
Department of Geriatric Medicine, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii, Honolulu. Department of Research, Kuakini Medical Center, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Abstract

Demographers predict human life expectancy will continue to increase over the coming century. These forecasts are based on two critical assumptions: advances in medical technology will continue apace and the environment that sustains us will remain unchanged. The consensus of the scientific community is that human activity contributes to global climate change. That change will degrade air and water quality, and global temperature could rise 11.5°F by 2100. If nothing is done to alter this climatic trajectory, humans will be confronted by a broad spectrum of radical environmental challenges. Historically, children and the elderly adults account for most of the death toll during times of severe environmental stress. This article makes an assessment from a geriatric viewpoint of the adverse health consequences that global climate change will bring to the older segments of future populations in the United States.

KEYWORDS:

Climate change; Environmental consequences; Geriatric population; Life expectancy forecasts.; Mortality risks

PMID:
24158763
PMCID:
PMC4202258
DOI:
10.1093/gerona/glt159
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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