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Dead Heat

The health consequences of global warming could be many

10:48am, June 28, 2004

If the mere thought of global warming makes you break out in a sweat—an unpleasant consequence, to be sure—just wait until the heat gets here in earnest. Some time this century, lengthy heat waves like the one that killed thousands in Europe last summer may become the summer norm. Diseases now found only in the tropics may broaden their range, and ones that currently threaten subtropical or temperate regions for only short periods each year may afflict residents of those areas for longer durations. Noxious gases and other airborne irritants could also increase with global warming, significantly heightening the toll of lung diseases.

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