Annual number of nights of thermal discomfort
The mean number of hot days combined with tropical nights increases southward. In the future, it is expected that the number of such days will grow across Europe. In cities, this effect is intensified further due to the urban heat island effect.
Whether citizens feel comfortable or not depends not only on the actual air temperature, but also on the complex interaction of several physical, physiological, behavioural, and psychological factors. The Thermal Comfort Index attempts to capture these relations and the comfort/discomfort levels they generate. From a health perspective, thermal comfort at night is crucial, as the human body needs to maintain reasonable levels for sleep and rest. The mortality risk, particularly among elderly, young and sick people increases with thermal discomfort.
For references, please go to www.eea.europa.eu/soer or scan the QR code.
This briefing is part of the EEA's report The European Environment - State and Outlook 2015. The EEA is an official agency of the EU, tasked with providing information on Europe's environment.
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