Claim: Climate Change Likely to Reduce the Amount of Sleep That People Get Per Year

Peer-Reviewed Publication

CELL PRESS

Most research looking at the impact of climate change on human life has focused on how extreme weather events affect economic and societal health outcomes on a broad scale. Yet climate change may also have a strong influence on fundamental daily human activities—including a host of behavioral, psychological, and physiological outcomes that are essential to wellbeing. In a study published May 20th in the journal One Earth, investigators report that increasing ambient temperatures negatively impact human sleep around the globe.

The team says their findings suggest that by the year 2099, suboptimal temperatures may erode 50 to 58 hours of sleep per person per year. In addition, they found that the temperature effect on sleep loss is substantially larger for residents from lower income countries as well as in older adults and females.

“Our results indicate that sleep—an essential restorative process integral for human health and productivity—may be degraded by warmer temperatures,” says first author Kelton Minor (@keltonminor) of the University of Copenhagen. “In order to make informed climate policy decisions moving forward, we need to better account for the full spectrum of plausible future climate impacts extending from today’s societal greenhouse gas emissions choices.”

It’s long been known that hot days increase deaths and hospitalizations and worsen human performance, yet the biological and behavioral mechanisms underlying these impacts have not been well understood. Recent self-reported data from the United States have suggested that subjective sleep quality decreases during periods of hot weather, but how temperature fluctuations may impact changes in objective sleep outcomes in people living across a variety of global climates has remained unclear.

“In this study, we provide the first planetary-scale evidence that warmer-than-average temperatures erode human sleep,” Minor says. “We show that this erosion occurs primarily by delaying when people fall asleep and by advancing when they wake up during hot weather.” 

To conduct this research, the investigators used anonymized global sleep data collected from accelerometer-based sleep-tracking wristbands. The data included 7 million nightly sleep records from more than 47,000 adults across 68 countries spanning all continents except for Antarctica. Measures from the type of wristbands used in this study had previously been shown to align with independent measures of wakefulness and sleep.

The study suggested that on very warm nights (greater than 30 degrees Celsius, or 86 degrees Fahrenheit), sleep declines an average of just over 14 minutes. The likelihood of getting less than seven hours of sleep also increases as temperatures rise.

“Our bodies are highly adapted to maintain a stable core body temperature, something that our lives depend on,”  Minor says. “Yet every night they do something remarkable without most of us consciously knowing—they shed heat from our core into the surrounding environment by dilating our blood vessels and increasing blood flow to our hands and feet.” He adds that in order for our bodies to transfer heat, the surrounding environment needs to be cooler than we are. 

Early controlled studies in sleep labs found that both humans and animals sleep worse when the room temperature is too hot or too cold. But this research was limited by how people act in the real world: they modify the temperature of their sleeping environment to be more comfortable.

In the current research, the investigators found that under normal living routines, people appear far better at adapting to colder outside temperatures than hotter conditions. “Across seasons, demographics, and different climate contexts, warmer outside temperatures consistently erode sleep, with the amount of sleep loss progressively increasing as temperatures become hotter,” Minor says.

One important observation was that people in developing countries seem to be more affected by these changes. It’s possible that the greater prevalence of air conditioning in developed countries could play a role, but the researchers could not definitively identify the reason because they did not have data on air conditioning access among subjects. The researchers also note that because they uncovered compelling evidence that the impact of warming temperatures on sleep loss is unequal globally, new research should especially consider more vulnerable populations, particularly those residing in the world’s hottest—and historically poorest—regions.

In future work, the team would like to collaborate with global climate scientists, sleep researchers, and technology providers to extend the scope of global sleep and behavioral analyses to other populations and contexts. Additionally, they are interested in studying the impact of rising outdoor temperatures on the sleep outcomes of incarcerated populations situated in hot climates, who may have particularly limited access to air conditioning. 

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This research was supported by the Danish Agency for Higher Education and Science and the Independent Research Fund Denmark.

One Earth, Minor et al. “Rising temperatures erode human sleep globally” https://www.cell.com/one-earth/fulltext/S2590-3322(22)00209-3 

One Earth (@OneEarth_CP), published by Cell Press, is a monthly journal that features papers from the fields of natural, social, and applied sciences. One Earth is the home for high-quality research that seeks to understand and address today’s environmental Grand Challenges, publishing across the spectrum of environmental change and sustainability science. A sister journal to CellChem, and JouleOne Earth aspires to break down barriers between disciplines and stimulate the cross-pollination of ideas with a platform that unites communities, fosters dialogue, and encourages transformative research. Visit http://www.cell.com/one-earth. To receive Cell Press media alerts, contact press@cell.com.


JOURNAL

One Earth

DOI

10.1016/j.oneear.2022.04.008 

METHOD OF RESEARCH

Observational study

SUBJECT OF RESEARCH

People

ARTICLE TITLE

Rising temperatures erode human sleep globally

ARTICLE PUBLICATION DATE

20-May-2022

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Alexy Scherbakoff
May 20, 2022 10:06 pm

All the climate change BS is pissing me off, mightily.

Climate believer
Reply to  Alexy Scherbakoff
May 21, 2022 3:30 am

One Earth…

“safe planetary operating spaces”…

“transformative social, political, economic, and technological pathways toward a sustainable and equitable future..”

As usual this has nothing to do with the climate and everything to do with the cancer that is “wokism” in the Western world.

A very good source of information on the subject is Dr James Lindsay, Translations from the Wokish on youtube.

Jon R. Salmi
Reply to  Climate believer
May 22, 2022 12:48 pm

Cb, if you start running into words such as transformative or towards, stop reading and go do something useful.If you push ahead you will soon be enmeshed in the tangled illogic of post-modernism.

H.R.
Reply to  Alexy Scherbakoff
May 21, 2022 9:56 am

“All the climate change BS is pissing me off, mightily.”

I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it, Alexy. Just ignore it.

b.nice
May 20, 2022 10:38 pm

In cold weather, you add an extra blanket

In hot weather.. you remove that blanket and turn on the air-conditioner or fan.

What is it with these clowns !!

And of course there is no evidence it will get warmer, anyway. !

Dennis
Reply to  b.nice
May 20, 2022 11:42 pm

But the field is being lengthened so that the goal posts can be moved to new climate emergency starts.

Old Man Winter
Reply to  b.nice
May 21, 2022 4:11 am

You need to wise up & get with the program! We’re supposed to be dumber than a box of rocks like
they are. Showing any gumption could get you sent to re-education camp. Alles Klar?

Richard Page
Reply to  b.nice
May 21, 2022 10:59 am

Even if it does get slightly warmer, we tend to adapt. Do people in warmer US states get more or less sleep than people in cooler US states? I doubt there is much difference at all frankly.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Richard Page
May 22, 2022 11:22 am

Spain and Mexico long ago adapted to hot temperatures by socially embracing the siesta.

TonyL
May 20, 2022 10:47 pm

Aha, my time to shine!
Sleep, a topic I have particular expertise in. Along with easy chair sitting and Beach Patrol.
Cold Weather: Crawl under a huge thick pile of quilts and comforters. As mom wold say “Snug as a bug in a rug”. Sleep away with the added comfort you would have mom’s approval.

When we have had enough cold, we hop on a jet to Barbados, deep in the Caribbean. A hard day on Beach Patrol on the beach, in the water and poolside at the swim-up bar, working as the resort bikini inspector, can be hard work. It leaves one ready for an afternoon nap before getting dressed for the evening’s fine dining.
Done correctly, the heat of the Caribbean islands poses no more challenge to sleep than the winter cold of the northern climes.

We note here for the record, that any commercial jet flight from any northern city in the US to any point in the Caribbean will give you more Climate Change than you can shake a stick at.

Plan A: Carry a T-shirt and “resort wear” style short pants in your carry-on bag. Change in Miami where you usually change flights. Or Puerto Rico if you manage more direct flights.

Mr.
Reply to  TonyL
May 21, 2022 10:00 am

Yes, I forget the actual metric, but there was a claim that if anyone was truly bothered by a 1.5 degree incremental increase in ambient temperatures, just relocate something like 70 miles north and you’re out of the “climate kill zone”.

alastair gray
May 20, 2022 11:11 pm

Scholarship- the gift that keeps on giving. where would we be without it. Who paid how much fior this trivial nonsense?

TonyL
Reply to  alastair gray
May 20, 2022 11:19 pm

It is a YouReekAlert posting. They are the gift that keeps on giving. Any research in Climate Science which appear in a YouReekAlert is always a twisted parody of what real research might look like. When they appear here, I usually just ignore them.

David Long
May 20, 2022 11:27 pm

That breaks down to less than 15 minutes per night. I, for one, pledge to start going to bed 15 minutes earlier by 2099.

Editor
Reply to  David Long
May 21, 2022 1:37 am

Thanks, David. You beat me to the underlying punchline associated with 58 hours of lost sleep per year. The study is just more nonsense masquerading as science.

Regards,
Bob

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Bob Tisdale
May 22, 2022 11:25 am

About as meaningful as the definition of an ‘average’ human being.

Peter W
Reply to  David Long
May 21, 2022 4:31 am

The way I figure it, you don’t need as much sleep when it is warmer because you don’t need to make up for all the activity needed to keep warm.

H.R.
Reply to  David Long
May 21, 2022 10:04 am

I’ll be taking a dirt nap by 2099, David.

On the plus side my eternal rest could be a bit warmer due to ‘Climate Change’ and a LOT hotter if I don’t stop doing all that stuff mom ‘n the preacher warned me about.

Ireneusz Palmowski
May 21, 2022 12:01 am

Severe Colorado snowstorm.

Scissor
Reply to  Ireneusz Palmowski
May 21, 2022 5:19 am

I lost some sleep last night as I had to get up in the middle of the night to shake snow off some trees and to make sure that the heaters that I had rigged up hadn’t blown any circuit breakers.

So far so good. I only have one remote thermometer, and it showed that one make shift heated enclosure never got below 42F. The unprotected outdoor temp is just at freezing.

Hasbeen
May 21, 2022 12:01 am

I lived in Rabaul New Guinea, latitude 4.11′, about 255 nautical miles from the equator. I did not like sleeping in air conditioning, so set up a small 12 volt fan on the bed head. On it’s lowest setting it circulated the air enough to keep me cool in the nightly 25C. I slept beautifully.

I also spent a couple of years sailing in the area. There was always enough breeze at night to make sleeping at anchor at night very comfortable. It is amazing the bullsh1t these people will come up with to push the scam.

Oldseadog
Reply to  Hasbeen
May 21, 2022 5:35 am

I spent 1971/2 as Master of a tanker delivering refined products around Indonesia. The ship did not have any aircon. No-one had any problems sleeping.

It would be interesting to know how many of the folk who wrote this paper have ever been out of Denmark.

fretslider
May 21, 2022 1:13 am

“Climate Change Likely to Reduce the Amount of Sleep That People Get”

That is the consequence of engineered climate anxiety.

LdB
Reply to  fretslider
May 21, 2022 6:48 am

Well I am getting my normal sleep so some idiot is losing mine

Dave K
May 21, 2022 1:28 am

I have noticed this phenomenon here in Cornwall, for certain periods the sun stays in the sky for longer and we stay out in the garden till much later (past our normal bedtime) and then the sun comes up earlier and the birds sing encouraging us to get up earlier to go out and do things. Therefore we get much less sleep that normal. However we are in fact saved as this curious period is known as “summer” and only lasts for a week 😉

Chaswarnertoo
Reply to  Dave K
May 21, 2022 2:21 am

Here in Wayells the rain gets warmer in ‘summer’.

MJPenny
Reply to  Dave K
May 21, 2022 8:14 am

Than was my first thought. Did they take into account the change in sunrise and sunset.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Dave K
May 22, 2022 11:29 am

Nobody likes a whiner! In Vermont, Summer comes on July 4th and leaves on July 5th. And the first liar is always at a disadvantage.

Fatherknowsbest
May 21, 2022 2:30 am

The Danish Agency for Higher Education and Science and the Independent Research Fund Denmark, wasted their money…

Something amusing to try. Instead of focussing on the next 50 years of climate, how about we run these models with data only up to the 1970’s, or the 1930’s. Then we run them forward to today and see how close they are to forecasting the current climate. It would seem a fairly easy test to validate themselves.

I wonder….

Old Man Winter
Reply to  Fatherknowsbest
May 21, 2022 4:17 am

Regardless of the results, they would always claim it’s “just more proof of glow-bull warming”!

Joao Martins
May 21, 2022 2:38 am

Will someone be so kind as to inform the authors of the paper that certain contraptions were already invented, which are usually called “air conditioning”?

Last edited 1 month ago by Joao Martins
Mickey Reno
May 21, 2022 3:43 am

Can you please present these results in a musical form, perhaps sung to the tune of Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious?

Philip Mulholland
May 21, 2022 4:09 am

Yawn.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
May 21, 2022 4:29 am

Interesting. I wonder what a study of the sleep habits of people living near windfarms would show? Surely in the interest of Science!® some funding agency will award a grant for this.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
May 21, 2022 6:47 am

As Cackles the Veep would say:

Ha ha ha ha ha ha! HA HA HA HA HA HA (snort) HA HA HA!

Philo
Reply to  Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
May 21, 2022 9:55 am

It’s been studied, maybe more than necessary. Without air conditioning warmer nights cause more sleeplessness. From practical experience, even a tray of ice cubes and a small fan can help falling asleep. Just don’t trip over the ice cubes when you have to go let loose some pee!

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Philo
May 21, 2022 2:38 pm

Never used ice cubes. Once in a while we would hang a wet burlap bag. Don’t remember the last time I saw one of those. Do they still sell rice in them? They don’t in our grocery store.

lee riffee
May 21, 2022 5:47 am

People losing sleep due to hot nights has been going on for ages…..my mom told me that when she was a kid, she and her brothers would drag their mattresses downstairs so they could sleep on the screened in porch where it was cooler. Back then her parents had no A/C, so they just dealt with it.

RevJay4
Reply to  lee riffee
May 21, 2022 8:26 am

That’s what we did as kids in mid-south US. Sleep on the screened in porch in hot weather, with a fan blowing over us all. Hot dogs and bean dinners made for smelly noisy nites. Saw it as an adventure. Kids had more fun back in the day over simple stuff.

Tim Gorman
Reply to  RevJay4
May 21, 2022 2:37 pm

If windows were just for looking out they wouldn’t be made so they could be opened. Open windows let a breeze in to cool the interior. Slept that way a LOT growing up. The four of us brothers would fight to see who got to sleep closest to the window!

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  lee riffee
May 22, 2022 11:33 am

As a small child in Northern Illinois, I often had difficulty with my afternoon nap because I would toss and turn and dream about sleeping on a coil of wet rope. However, the problem was the humidity, not the temperature.

Tim Gorman
May 21, 2022 5:56 am

It’s long been known that hot days increase deaths and hospitalizations and worsen human performance, yet the biological and behavioral mechanisms underlying these impacts have not been well understood.”

OMG! What do they think happens when it’s cold outside? You stay inside more, catch more cold and flu bugs, and generally the death rate is higher than when it is warm outside!

So which would you rather have?

Rich Davis
Reply to  Tim Gorman
May 21, 2022 6:50 am

Obviously they want more death. They always choose death.

Tom Halla
May 21, 2022 6:39 am

I follow some British news sites, and they report 25C as a heat wave. Being in Texas, that would be a January day.

DonK31
Reply to  Tom Halla
May 21, 2022 7:01 am

As a Flordian,at 25C I would have the heat on.

Walter Sobchak
May 21, 2022 7:07 am

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
May 21, 2022 7:10 am

“I’m So Tired” by The Beatles
P. Mccartney / J. Lennon

I’m so tired
I haven’t slept a wink
I’m so tired
My mind is on the blink
I wonder, should I get up and fix myself a drink?

No, no, no
I’m so tired
I don’t know what to do
I’m so tired …

joe x
May 21, 2022 8:19 am

58 hours of sleep per person per year?
hell, i lose twice that now worrying about the leftist destroying our republic.

Doonman
May 21, 2022 9:57 am

Since all “climate change” is measured by global average temperatures, I think there is a serious misconception in this article that should be cleared up.

I’ll need to buy a globally average blanket in order to deal with globally averaged temperatures. Does anyone know where I can buy one? I’m still looking for my globally average thermostat and thermometer as well.

Maybe the My Pillow Guy could sell a globally average pillow for my globally average head as well?

May 21, 2022 10:59 am

Why does government, NGO’s or anyone spend a dime on such useless “research”, even if their prognosis was true (which I highly doubt) their conclusion translates to an average loss of sleep of about to 9 minutes a day.

Joseph Borsa
May 21, 2022 11:25 am

Words are important so I suggest we shouldn’t refer to this material as a scam. They really believe it. If you really believe in what you’re saying or doing, it isn’t a scam. It may be mistaken, but it’s not a scam. I suggest a better word for it is nonsense.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Joseph Borsa
May 22, 2022 4:26 pm

For some it is a pseudo-religious dogma, sure. Those are the ones who have been scammed. But don’t dismiss the fact that for a good many others, they are knowingly pushing a scam, or negligently ignorant.

Big corporations selling useless windmills could care less about climate change. They would stop the instant the subsidies and tax breaks disappear. Whether they know it’s all based on lies, or they just don’t care to know, doesn’t make it less of a scam.

The same goes for most of the politicians. They push it because they perceive a chance to win votes and/or because the crony capitalists are buying them with campaign contributions. They mostly don’t care if there’s any truth to it. They care if there’s votes and money in it.

It’s a SCAM!

J.R.
May 21, 2022 1:17 pm

 they found that the temperature effect on sleep loss is substantially larger for residents from lower income countries as well as in older adults and females.”

So, men younger than 50 in industrialized nations have nothing to worry about. Good to know.

Bob
May 21, 2022 5:34 pm

So does this mean that here in Montana I should disconnect my furnace and give my blankets away in order to get more qualitative sleep? Ignorant morons!

Thomas Schaefer
May 21, 2022 5:53 pm

Bought -10 degree sleeping bags for the family, assuming the coming heating oil shortages. Kids were excited when they arrived and played inside. Then I gave them the serious discussion about what FJB is doing to energy in this country.

Ireneusz Palmowski
May 23, 2022 2:26 am

La Niña works – Tropical Storm in Alabama.

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