Climate change blamed for increased allergy suffering

Sniffly types might have a bit more incentive to be environmentally conscious than the rest of us, it seems, as climate change is said to be contributing to a longer season for ragweed and pollen, and consequently, increased duration and severity of seasonal allergy symptoms.

Oh, yes- it’s possibly true. Researchers behind a study published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences monitored ten sites across the US and Canada between 1995 and 2009, discovering a marked increased in allergy suffering during that time:

The team looked at pollen counts and weather data from 10 locations spanning more than 1,300 miles of the central part of North America — from Georgetown, Texas (30.63 degrees north latitude), to Saskatoon, Canada (52.07 degrees north latitude)… Five sites, extending north from LaCrosse, Wis. (43.80 degrees north), to Saskatoon had significant increases in the length of the ragweed pollen season of at least 13 days. Saskatoon’s increase was 27 days — a full month’s worth of facial tissues and antihistamines.

Researchers singled out ragweed as the hardiest and most contributing allergy-inflamer tracked during the course of the study.

[LA Times]