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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(12), 6734-6747; doi:10.3390/ijerph10126734

Projected Heat-Related Mortality in the U.S. Urban Northeast

1 Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, 722 West 168th St., New York, NY 10032, USA 2 Columbia University Center for Climate Systems Research, 2880 Broadway, New York, NY 10025, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 October 2013 / Revised: 19 November 2013 / Accepted: 19 November 2013 / Published: 3 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change and Human Health)
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Increased heat-related mortality is projected to be among the major impacts of climate change on human health, and the United States urban Northeast region is likely to be particularly vulnerable. In support of regional adaptation planning, quantitative information is needed on potential future health responses at the urban and regional scales. Here, we present future projections of heat-related mortality in Boston, New York and Philadelphia utilizing downscaled next-generation climate models and Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) developed in support of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)’s Fifth Assessment Report (AR5). Our analyses reveal that heat-related mortality rates per 100,000 of population during the baseline period between 1985 and 2006 were highest in Philadelphia followed by New York City and Boston. However, projected heat-related mortality rates in the 2020s, 2050s and 2080s were highest in New York City followed by Philadelphia and Boston. This study may be of value in developing strategies for reducing the future impacts of heat and building climate change resilience in the urban Northeast region.
Keywords: heat-related mortality; climate change; New York; Boston; Philadelphia heat-related mortality; climate change; New York; Boston; Philadelphia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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Petkova, E.P.; Horton, R.M.; Bader, D.A.; Kinney, P.L. Projected Heat-Related Mortality in the U.S. Urban Northeast. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 6734-6747.

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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert