An international group of researchers has discovered that, through its economic effects, climate change could have a substantial impact on fertility.
In fact, it seems that people decide how much time and money to devote to the growth of children and whether to use these resources to have more children or to invest more on the future of each child, also based on climatic variables. The study, published in Environmental Research Letters, examined two examples of economies, Colombia and Switzerland.
It focused on how the demographic impacts of climate change may differ between richer and poorer countries. The model follows people through two phases of life, childhood and adulthood.
According to the most up-to-date data presented by andrologists, the average number of men’s spermatozoa today is halved compared to 40 years ago and one out of 10 citizens is now infertile: in addition to environmental pollution, they say, it could also depend on climate change.
It is in fact known that the increase in temperature damages the male reproductive system, much more than the female one: in some animal species an increase of a few degrees in the external temperatures can reach half the fertility and experts fear that this is also happening for the man.
Studies on animals, for example on butterflies and beetles, „show that the increase in temperatures is probably contributing to the extinction of some species because the male reproductive system and spermatozoa are very sensitive to heat – explains Alessandro Palmieri president (SIAI ) furthermore, the negative effects are also passed on to the offspring that may be generated, which is less fertile, with a 25% reduction in reproductive capacity „.
The exposure of males to heat during developmental age also compromises reproductive capacity once they become adults, in various animal species: the result is, again, a net decline in reproductive possibilities.
Man certainly has more protection systems than the organism, but suspicions of a decidedly negative effect of climate change on fertility are now almost a certainty even for our species. The increase of one degree of environmental temperature, according to recent studies, increases for example the scrotal temperature by 0.1 C ° and this can compromise fertility.