PIANETA TERRA: La Nostra Amorevole Dimora
Extreme Cold: Another Harmful Consequence of Climate Change   

Welcome, eco-wise viewers, to Planet Earth: Our Loving Home. Through a complex interaction of changing flows of deep sea currents, warming oceans, ice sheet melting at the poles, fluctuating global wind patterns and other factors, extremes at both ends of the temperature scale are being recorded across our world due to climate change.
Dr. Zong (m): So in the last 200 years, we saw the temperature was rising. That changed the long-term climate trajectory, which is very, very strong evidence for the argument that recent climate warming is due to meat. The warming trend is going to continue in the next few decades and it's quite, quite foreseeable that some extreme weather can happen more frequently because within the atmosphere it has more energy and the atmosphere becomes more dynamic.

Climate change researchers have found that animal agriculture is overwhelmingly responsible for the warming of our planet. Today we’ll focus on intense cold-related events and disasters which are one of the many harmful consequences of this enormously injurious activity.

Extreme cold events typically occur when temperatures in a region drop significantly below the average for that time of year. Humans, animals, plants and crops may be at risk in such weather, and public infrastructure is also susceptible to damage or destruction.  For humans, exposure to frigid weather, whether indoors or outdoors, in some instances may cause serious health problems or even death.
Highly vulnerable groups during these periods include infants, the elderly, outdoor workers, the homeless and those living in homes that lack heat or are not well-insulated.

Depending on how far the temperatures dip, the cold may induce hypothermia, where victims show symptoms such as shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling or uncoordinated movements, memory loss, slurred speech and drowsiness.

Another common health risk is frostbite, where the affected person may exhibit white or grayish skin and blisters as well as experience itching and/or numbness. Amputation may be required in some instances for severely frost-bitten areas of the body.

Freezing weather may also exacerbate existing health issues, especially chronic conditions. Crop damage from the chilliness may cause malnourishment in communities. Let us now review some of the cold-related disasters that have occurred across our world thus far in 2010, starting with Asia.

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