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Summers unlikely to limit growth of COVID-19: Study

NEW JERSEY: A study has revealed that higher summer temperatures are unlikely to limit the growth of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to a study published at Princeton University, several statistical studies conducted over the past few months have shown a slight correlation between climate and the novel coronavirus, the hotter and more humid it is, the less likely the virus is to spread.
However, the findings remain preliminary, and much remains unknown about the exact relationship between climate and COVID-19. The study does not rule out the correlation entirely but concludes that the impact of climate on the spread of the virus is modest.
“Our findings suggest, without effective control measures, strong outbreaks are likely in more humid climates and summer weather will not substantially limit pandemic growth,” the study said.
“We project that warmer or more humid climates will not slow the virus at the early stage of the pandemic,” said Rachel Baker, a postdoctoral research associate in the Princeton Environmental Institute (PEI).
While climate, particularly humidity, plays a role in the spread of other coronaviruses and the flu, the study said a more important factor is the absence of widespread immunity to COVID-19.
“We do see some influence of climate on the size and timing of the pandemic, but, in general, because there’s so much susceptibility in the population, the virus will spread quickly no matter the climate conditions,” Baker said.
Baker said that the spread of the virus seen in countries such as Brazil, Ecuador, and Australia indicates that warmer conditions do little to halt the pandemic.
“It does not seem that climate is regulating spread right now,” Baker said. Without strong containment measures or a vaccine, the coronavirus may continue to infect a large proportion of the world’s population, the researchers stated.

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