Record Cold Cripples Food Crops: Future Food Security at Risk

By Vijay Jayaraj – Re-Blogged From WUWT

Are we putting ourselves at risk by not weighing the risks of cold weather appropriately? And have we, out of our negligence, rendered the agricultural sector susceptible to disaster in the event of an unexpected cooling?

After an unusually cold spring and summer this year hampered crop growth across the Northern Hemisphere, costing farmers millions of dollars, the answer seems to be yes.

Most people understand that food crops are vulnerable to abnormal weather. However, fewer people understand that that crops are more sensitive to cold than to hot weather.

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Excess Winter Deaths in England and Wales Highest Since 1976

[Excess Deaths are calculated as that period’s difference from the yearly average. If there were 12,000 deaths in a typical year, or 1000 per month, and in December there were 2500, then there were 2500 – 1000 = 1500 ‘Excess Deaths’ in that December. -Bob]

By Dennis Campbell – Re-Blogged From The Guardian

Call for more NHS resources as elderly people and women among most vulnerable

Snow in Derbyshire
Snow in Derbyshire last December. The temperatures last winter are thought to have been partly to blame for the excess deaths. Photograph: Joe Giddens/PA

There were 50,100 excess deaths in England and Wales last winter, when there was a prolonged spell of extreme cold, making it the highest number since 1976, figures have shown.

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Moderate Cold Kills More People Than Extreme Heat

By Kip Hansen – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

cold_outside

Science is a wonderful thing.  As time moves on, in a single direction,  Science, as an endeavor, discovers new things and improves our lives.

With a “hat tip” to the inestimable Jane Brody, health journalist at the NY Times who covers the story here, we are reminded of the study [free .pdf]  from Antonio Gasparrini et al. which was published in The Lancet,  July 25, 2015, with the [way too long] title:  “Mortality risk attributable to high and low ambient temperature: a multicountry observational study”.

The bottom-line finding, the take home message, might surprise even readers here at WUWT, quoted in the side-bar of the journal article:

Interpretation: 

We report that non-optimum ambient temperature is responsible for substantial excess in mortality, with important differences between countries. Although most previous research has focused on heat-related effects, most of the attributable deaths were caused by cold temperatures. Despite the attention given to extreme weather events, most of the effect happened on moderately hot and moderately cold days, especially moderately cold days.

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