The number of annual excess deaths caused by hot weather in England and Wales is projected to surge by 257% by the middle of the century, as a result of climate change and population growth, concludes research published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
The elderly (75+) will be most at risk, particularly in the South and the Midlands, the findings suggest.
The research team, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and Public Health England, used time-series regression analysis to chart historic (1993-2006) fluctuations in weather patterns and death rates to characterise the associations between temperature and mortality, by region and by age group.
They then applied these to projected population increases and local climate to estimate the future number of deaths likely to be caused by temperature -- hot and cold -- for the 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s.
They based their calculations on the projected daily average temperatures for 2000-09, 2020-29, 2050-59 and 2080-89, derived from the British Atmospheric Data Centre (BADC), and population growth estimates from the Office of National Statistics.
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