Climate Change and Health
More intense and frequent weather events, such as extreme heat, storms, and flooding, can all have an impact on our health and well-being. Extreme heat is already impacting Danvers. This trend will only continue to worsen as extreme heat days will increase. Essex County can expect to see up to 38 more extreme heat days by 2050.
Extreme heat can be dangerous and even deadly for human health. This is especially the case for certain groups such as seniors, youth, or people with pre-existing health conditions or disabilities. In 2017, there were 83 ER visits for heat stress in Essex County (Massachusetts DPH Environmental Public Health Tracking, 2017).
Graph demonstrating project increase in median temperature. Source: Resilient MA Data Grapher, 2022.
Storms and Our Health
Climate hazards do not impact everyone in the same way. Some groups bear disproportionate impacts, including seniors and unhoused individuals and families.
The senior population in Danvers is growing, with the highest relative population increase of any age group. Seniors face potential isolation, lack of access to resources, and the need for more care. 29.2% of seniors in Danvers live alone and are potentially more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change (U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2016-2020).
Flooding and intense storms are an issue in Danvers, both of which are projected to increase due to climate change, and have led to property and infrastructure damage and power outages. The blizzard of 2013 left nearly 400,000 Massachusetts residents without power and these storms are among the most expensive and disruptive weather events in Massachusetts (Danvers MVP Summary of Findings Report, 2020).
One tool that can help keep ourselves and our families safe is the Danvers emergency alert system. Did you know residents can receive emergency notifications through Blackboard Connect? Receiving alerts about local hazards makes a big difference in our ability to protect ourselves, our families, and our neighbors during an emergency. If you aren't signed up to receive notifications from the Town, sign up today!
Impacts from our changing climate, like more hot days, can have negative outcomes for our community's physical and mental well-being, especially for more vulnerable groups like kids and seniors. It's important to make sure everyone in Danvers has access to the resources they need to stay healthy in the years ahead. The Town is working to improve access to health resources and address inequity through supporting youth and young families. DanversCARES is a Town program whose mission is to increase health and wellness among children and youth.
Be Part of the Solution
Stay Informed and Get Prepared
Follow these steps to stay informed, safe, and prepared.