"We don't want to dramatize it, but clearly the data shows that it does lead towards a very bleak future," said IFRC secretary-general Jagan Chapagain.
There are clear limits beyond which people exposed to extreme heat and humidity cannot survive. There are also likely to be levels of extreme heat beyond which societies may find it practically impossible to deliver effective adaptation for all. On current trajectories, heat waves could meet and exceed these physiological and social limits in the coming decades, including in regions such as the Sahel and south and southwest Asia.
Projected future death rates from extreme heat are staggeringly high -- comparable in magnitude by the end of the century to all cancers or all infectious diseases -- and staggeringly unequal.
If emissions of the greenhouse gases which cause climate change are not aggressively reduced, the world will face "previously unimaginable levels of extreme heat".