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Preparing for climate change in Wyre

Extreme heat

Hotter and drier summers mean the chances of experiencing extreme heatwaves and droughts also increases, which can be problematic in the UK where our infrastructure is not built to withstand a warmer climate.

How does extreme heat affect Wyre?

Extreme heat will increase instances of heat-related disease, such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke. This will increase pressure on our social care systems and the NHS. This is a particular issue for Wyre, which has a large number of elderly residents, who are less able to regulate their temperature. Babies and young children, and those suffering long term health conditions are also at risk. Visit the NHS website for tips on how to cope with the health risks of hot weather.

Heatwaves are impacting our biodiversity by forcing trees and plants into 'false autumn', as a sign of tremendous stress to try and conserve water, while younger trees without established roots die off. Changes in temperature are also causing species ranges to shift northwards, limiting the habitat of many important pollinators like our butterflies and bumblebees. This means that other species that were previously unable to survive in our cooler climate, such as mosquitoes, are becoming more common, bringing tropical diseases to the UK.

Rising temperatures also worsens air pollution, particularly in built up areas, as this facilitates more chemical reactions from vehicle and factory emissions. This results in increased smog, toxic to humans and wildlife. Wyre's air pollution is low due to our location on the coast, however those in close proximity to heavy traffic, such as taxi drivers, are more likely to be affected.

Our food security is also affected by extreme heat, both locally and abroad. Crop failures in countries where we import most of our food from can cause local food shortages and increases in price, worsening the effects of the cost-of-living crisis. 

Preparing for extreme heat

To adapt to the changing climate we can prepare our homes for rising temperatures by: 

  • Installing blinds or black out curtains to cover windows to keep the sun out
  • Placing a thermometer in your main living room and bedroom to monitor the temperature
  • Keeping indoor plants to help cool the air 
  • Planting trees or leafy plants near windows outside to act as natural air-conditioners
  • Insulating your loft and cavity walls to keep the heat in when it is cold, and out when it is hot
  • Identifying places in your community you can go to get cool, such as libraries or shopping centres
  • Being aware of the symptoms of heat stroke and heat exhaustion 

Visit the government advice pages for staying safe in hot weather.

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