Nearly five times more people will likely die due to extreme heat in the coming decades, an international team of experts said on Wednesday, warning that without action on climate change the “health of humanity is at grave risk”.

Lethal heat was just one of the many ways the world´s still-increasing use of fossil fuels threatens human health, according to The Lancet Countdown, a major annual assessment carried out by leading researchers and institutions.More common droughts will put millions at risk of starving, mosquitoes spreading farther than ever before will take infectious diseases with them, and health systems will struggle to cope with the burden, the researchers warned.The dire assessment comes during what is expected to be the hottest year in human history — just last week, Europe´s climate monitor declared that last month was the warmest October on record.It also comes ahead of the COP28 climate talks in Dubai later this month, which will for the first time host a “health day” on December 3 as experts try to shine a light on global warming´s impact on health.Despite growing calls for global action, energy-related carbon emissions hit new highs last year, the Lancet Countdown report said, singling out still-massive government subsidies and private bank investments into planet-heating fossil fuels.

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