A study published by the University of Évora on Tuesday concluded that the number of deaths from heart and respiratory diseases was higher during the hotter, drier and more polluted months of wildfire seasons.
Furthermore, “high temperatures, low relative humidity, and high near-surface ozone concentrations have increased the overall burden of disease” among the most vulnerable groups, i.e. The elderly, pregnant women and socially and economically disadvantaged populations.
As stated in the statement regarding The research team noted that forest fires “often occur in conjunction with climate events such as heat waves, leading to the release of large amounts of pollutants into the atmosphere.”
Moreover, adds Idicle Duarte, the first author of the book Stady“Smoke and particulate matter from wildfires are harmful to human health,” representing “a risk factor for heart and respiratory problems and increased morbidity and mortality rates.”
In this study, only the months from June to October of the forest fire seasons from 2011 to 2020 were taken into account, during which the burned area exceeded one thousand hectares..
To enhance the database, Data on burned area, particles with a diameter of 10 or 2.5 micrometers, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, optical depth of aerosols, data on mortality rates from circulatory diseases, organ diseases Respiratory syndrome, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma.
The study was published on October 6 under the title “Atmospheric pollutant components of fires and their impact on mortality in Portugal during forest fire seasons“And published in the magazine Geological health, Conducted by a team of researchers from Institute of Earth Sciences From the University of Évora.
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