Author/s:

Burkart, K.
Endlicher, W.

Publisher:

The Geographical Society of Berlin

Year of Publication:

2009

Urban areas are hot spots, contributing to climate change on multiple scales; but they are simultaneously affected by and most vulnerable to the effects of climate change due to their high density of susceptible population, their often risk-aggravating environmental conditions and low socioeconomic standards (Grimm et al. 2008, Kraas 2007). The changes in climate may have a severe impact on human illness and mortality and are likely to produce a sustained change in the occurrence and spatial distribution of diseases. Although the relationship between temperature and human health has been studied for several regions and cities in the developed world, there is still little knowledge about the atmospheric influences on the burden of disease in developing countries, in particular tropical climates. However, the increase in the speed and extent of worldwide urbanisation, often referred to as ‘urban turn’, is leading to the emergence of so-called megacities, more than three-quarters of which are situated in the developing world. Dhaka, now the eleventh-largest city in the world and one of the world’s fastest growing, is set to accumulate many of these anticipated public health problems.

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