heat stress

The risk of heat stress to people

All Authors: 
Kjellstrom T, Woodward A, Gohar L, Lowe J, Lemke B, Lines L, Briggs D, Freyberg C, Otto M, Hyatt O (2015) . In: King D, Schrag D, Dadi Z, Ye Q, Ghosh A, Eds.
Publication Date: 
2015

First paragraph of book chapter: The human body has behavioural and physical mechanisms that work to maintain its core temperature at about 37°C. If the body’s internal temperature rises above this level, then body systems and vital physiological functions are compromised, and in severe cases, death can result. The climatic conditions relevant to such heat stress may be measured in terms of the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT), which takes account of temperature, humidity, wind speed, and solar radiation.1 We calculate WBGT for in-shade (no

Heat stress causes substantial labour productivity loss in Australia

All Authors: 
Zander KK, Botzen WJW, Oppermann E, Kjellstrom T, Garnett ST
Publication Date: 
2015

Heat stress at the workplace is an occupational health hazard that reduces labour productivity. Assessment of productivity loss resulting from climate change has so far been based on physiological models of heat exposure. These models suggest productivity may decrease by 11–27% by 2080 in hot regions such as Asia and the Caribbean, and globally by up to 20% in hot months by 2050. Using an approach derived from health economics, we describe self-reported estimates of work absenteeism and reductions in work performance caused by heat in Australia during 2013/2014.

Time-motion analysis as a novel approach for evaluating the impact of environmental heat exposure on labor loss in agriculture workers

All Authors: 
Ioannou LG, Tsoutsoubi L, Samoutis G, Kajfez Bogataj L, Kenny GP, Nybo L, Kjellstrom T, Flouris AD
Publication Date: 
2017

Introduction: In this study we (i) introduced time-motion analysis for assessing the impact of workplace heat on the work shift time spent doing labor (WTL) of grape-picking workers, (ii) examined whether seasonal environmental differences can influence their WTL, and (iii) investigated whether their WTL can be assessed by monitoring productivity or the vineyard manager's estimate of WTL. Methods: Seven grape-picking workers were assessed during the summer and/or autumn via video throughout four work shifts.

Climate conditions, workplace heat and occupational health in South-East Asia in the context of climate change

All Authors: 
Kjellstrom T, Lemke B, Otto M
Publication Date: 
2017

Occupational health is particularly affected by high heat exposures in workplaces, which will be an increasing problem as climate change progresses. People working in jobs of moderate or heavy work intensity in hot environments are at particular risk, owing to exposure to high environmental heat and internal heat production. This heat needs to be released to protect health, and such release is difficult or impossible at high temperatures and high air humidity. A range of clinical health effects can occur, and the heat-related physical

Estimated work ability in warm outdoor environments depends on the chose heat stress assessment metric

All Authors: 
Peter Bröde, Dusan Fiala, Bruno Lemke, Tord Kjellstrom
Publication Date: 
2018

With a view to occupational effects of climate change, we performed a simulation study on the influence of different heat stress assessment metrics on estimated workability (WA) of labour in warm outdoor environments. Whole-day shifts with varying workloads were simulated using as input meteorological records for the hottest month from four cities with prevailing hot (Dallas, New Delhi) or warm-humid conditions (Managua, Osaka), respectively.

Calculating Workplace WBGT from Meteorological Data: A Tool for Climate Change Assessment

All Authors: 
Lemke B, Kjellstrom T
Publication Date: 
2012

The WBGT heat stress index has been well tested under a variety of climatic conditions and quantitative links have been established between WBGT and the work-rest cycles needed to prevent heat stress effects at the workplace. While there are more specific methods based on indi-vidual physiological measurements to determine heat strain in an individual worker, the WBGT index is used in international and national standards to specify workplace heat stress risks.

Regional maps of occupational heat exposure: past, present and potential future

All Authors: 
Hyatt O, Lemke B, Kjellstrom T
Publication Date: 
2010

Background: An important feature of climate change is increasing human heat exposure in workplaces without cooling systems in tropical and subtropical countries. Detailed gridded heat exposure maps will provide essential information for public health authorities. Objectives: To develop and test methods for calculating occupational heat exposures and present results in easily interpreted maps.