UA-131046696-1 [slim_seo_breadcrumbs]

Scientists say climate change may have fueled Zika outbreak; Schatz among Senators urging Obama to take action


Climate change may have fueled the outbreak of the mosquito-borne Zika virus in Latin American and may make it harder for developing countries to manage future epidemics, researchers said Friday.

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Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz has joined dozens of U.S. Senate Democrats in asking President Obama to take "aggressive" action to prevent the spread of mosquito-borne diseases such as the Zika virus and dengue fever into the United States, including Hawaii, which has recorded 250 confirmed cases of dengue fever on Hawaii Island.  Climate scientists believe warmer and wetter weather in the tropics have caused favorable conditions for mosquito breeding and the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses.  According to the World Health Organization, the Zika virus could infect as many as 4 million people this year.  Pregnant woman are at high risk of giving birth to children with microcephaly, a brain abnormality tentatively linked to the Zika virus.  In Hawaii, the state Legislature is trying to come up with a coordinating body that would identify mosquito breeding areas and allocate resources to stop the spread of dengue and other related diseases.


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