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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Increasing Probability of Heat-Related Mortality in a Mediterranean City Due to Urban Warming

by Andri Pyrgou 1,* and Mat Santamouris 2,*
1
Energy, Environment and Water Research Center, The Cyprus Institute, P.O. Box 27456, Nicosia 1645, Cyprus
2
The Anita Lawrence Chair in High Performance Architecture, School of Built Environment, University of New South Wales, Sydney 2052, Australia
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(8), 1571; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15081571
Received: 25 June 2018 / Revised: 21 July 2018 / Accepted: 23 July 2018 / Published: 25 July 2018
Extreme temperatures impose thermal stress on human health, resulting in increased hospitalizations and mortality rate. We investigated the circulatory and respiratory causes of death for the years 2007 to 2014 inclusive for the urban and rural areas of Nicosia, Cyprus under urban heatwave and non-heatwave conditions. Heatwaves were defined as four or more consecutive days with mean urban daily temperature over the 90th percentile threshold temperature of the eight investigated years. Lag period of adverse health effects was found to be up to three days following the occurrence of high temperatures. The relative risk (RR) for mortality rate under heatwave and non-heatwave conditions was found taking in consideration the lag period. The results showed the increase of mortality risk particularly for men of ages 65–69 (RR = 2.38) and women of ages 65–74 (around RR = 2.54) in the urban area, showing that women were more vulnerable to heat extremities. High temperatures were also associated with high ozone concentrations, but they did not impose an excess risk factor, as they did not reach extreme values. This analysis highlights the importance of preparing for potential heat related health impacts even in Cyprus, which is an island with frequent heatwaves. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban heat island; heatwaves; ozone; PM10; humidity; health; relative risk urban heat island; heatwaves; ozone; PM10; humidity; health; relative risk
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Pyrgou, A.; Santamouris, M. Increasing Probability of Heat-Related Mortality in a Mediterranean City Due to Urban Warming. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1571.

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