Climate change isn’t just associated with global warming and the natural disasters that come with it. Scientists have also found that it’s a risk factor in miscarriages at a seaside village in Bangladesh. The findings are alarming, too.
Dr. Manzoor Hanifi, a scientist from the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research Bangladesh (ICDDRB), told BBC that this is mostly happening to women who live closer to the sea. They monitored pregnant women in the regions of Chakaria and Matlab where 11 percent and 8 percent of pregnancies, respectively, end in miscarriages.
“This difference, the scientists believe, is to do with the amount of salt in the water the women drink—the increase of which is caused by climate change,” BBC reported. “When sea levels rise, salty sea water flows into fresh water rivers and streams, and eventually into the soil. Most significantly, it also flows into underground water stores—called aquifers—where it mixes with, and contaminates, the fresh water.”
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), adults should only consume less than 5 grams of salt per day. But the villagers living in the coastal zone of Chakaria consume up to 16 grams. This much salt will cause various problems in pregnant women, including miscarriage.
This is alarming since other nations, not just Bangladesh, might soon be affected by this. The Guardian reported in 2012 that fresh water will become scarce if the ice caps continue to melt into the sea, and if rainfalls are seldom.
Plus, this isn’t the first time pregnant women were endangered by climate change. Last year, researchers found that global warming could be linked to higher risk of premature births, stillbirths, and negative effects.[BBC]
Photo courtesy of Pexels
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