Can we blame Climate Change for allergies? We look at the facts.

Allergies. So many of us have them, so many of us hate them - the itchy eyes, the endless sneezing, and general misery. But who or what’s to blame?

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Climate change and the pollen season.

For the last thirty years, climate change has been having a significant impact on allergy season. Here’s what they think at the scientific journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences:

  • Climate change is making the allergy season worse.
  • The allergy season starts 20 days earlier and lasts 10 days longer.
  • The allergy season now has a 21% increase in pollen production, compared to three decades ago.
  • The changes may indicate that the plants’ internal timing mechanisms are off. 

(These data are from measurements collected between 1990 and 2018 in one of the largest studies of its kind in the U.S. and Canada.) 

 

Climate Change is nothing to sneeze at

Yes, pollen production, like most natural systems, is a complex process affected by multiple factors – but even taking that into account the conclusion is the same: Climate Change is increasing pollen.

It’s another unwelcome reminder that Climate Change isn’t a distant, abstract thing. It’s right here, right now, and it’s making your eyes water! 

 

So why does more pollen mean more hay fever?

Here are three ideas put forward:

  • Longer allergy seasons give the human body more time to get sensitised to the pollen
  • A warmer climate suits the most allergen-producing weeds by creating less frosts
  • Plants exposed to increased levels of carbon dioxide grow bigger and produce more pollen

 

Time to tackle the challenge of climate change. 

So we’re breathing in and sneezing out the impacts of climate change on a regular basis, but with a massive, global collective effort we can slow Climate Change down and prevent the worst of the predicted climate disasters. We just need buy-in and commitment from everyone.

We’ve got loads of help and advice for how to aim for a zero waste lifestyle, or resist the urge to splash out on fast fashion. If you’re a business owner, we can guide you towards being more sustainable on a corporate level.

For help and ideas, just ask us! We’d love to hear from you at positiveplanet.uk.

You care about the planet,
so do we

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