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Is climate change causing allergies?

Posted by Lindy on May 26, 2011

May 26, 2011

Apocalyptic images of global climate change include drought, rising sea levels, suffocating coral reefs and emaciated, drowning polar bears. But a new study points to some of the more immediate and mundane side effects of global warming: runny noses, itchy eyes and persistent coughs.

A research lab has found that there is a 12% rise in people they tested who are allergic to molds and 15% rise in those allergic to ragwort over the past 4 years.

“The rapid rise in common ragweed and mold is consistent with other research linking climate change to greater sensitization to select environmental allergens,” wrote the authors.

In 2010, a team of scientists showed that fungal spore growth – a common allergen – increased with rises in carbon dioxide. Also another paper “demonstrated a clear correlation between frost-free days and ragweed pollen season” and therefore, to higher exposure to the ragweed allergen, as temperatures rise


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