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Bad news for bug-haters: A month’s worth of hotter days may have irksome consequences

Get ready for hot weather and bugs.

More hotter-than-normal summer days are coming your way, and with them more health risks and pesky insects, a Climate Central study shows.

Nearly all 244 cities in the study have more days with abnormally hot temperatures than they did in the 1970s, and 35 cities have at least a month’s worth of these days, the study said.

“McAllen, Texas leads the list with a remarkable increase of 64 hot days, followed by Houston (49 days), Laredo (47 days), and Sarasota, Florida (44 days),” the report says. “The largest changes are dominated by southern areas — of the top 20 cities, Las Vegas and Raleigh are the furthest north.

“Summer heat in the South is shifting from uncomfortable to downright unbearable.”

But these days aren’t just driving up your air conditioning bill or making it more miserable to go outside.

They could be impacting your health, the study said.

Extreme heat often causes more yearly deaths than other weather conditions, according to the Department of Homeland Security. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 600 people in the U.S. die every year from extreme heat.

But there’s something else to worry about: pesky insects.

Hot summers can bring more bugs that carry disease, and another report from Climate Central found that there has been an increase in “disease danger days” in 94% of cities analyzed, the study said.

This means there are more days that are “suitable for disease transmission” from mosquitoes when compared to the 1970s, Climate Central said.

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Bailey Aldridge is a reporter covering real-time news in North and South Carolina. She has a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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