Joyce Msuya, Inter Press Service News Agency
- Our planet is heating up. 2018 was the fourth-warmest year on record, with peak temperatures engulfing the planet – from 43°C in Baku, Azerbaijan, to the low 30s across Scandinavia. The last four years have been the hottest since records began in 1880.
It is no surprise, then, that demand for cooling is growing. In just one part of the cooling sector, the number of air conditioners in use is expected to rise from 1.2 billion today to 4.5 billion by 2050 – boosted by the growing spending power of the global middle class.
We should not stop this growth in cooling. Almost one third of the world’s population faces dangerous temperatures for over 20 days a year, while heatwaves cause 12,000 deaths annually.
We need to provide equitable access to a technology that protects against extreme heat, keeps food fresh and vaccines stable, and so much more.