Covid-19 has tightened its tentacles around 7 billion heads;
number of new cases increasing, death toll is up; all economic and social lives
are standstill, patients are suffering, their loved ones worried and healthy
ones are frightened, not to catch covid. In this catastrophic scenario, there is
good news that coming summer will put shackle around this dreadful dragon.
Chinese scientists, Jingyuan Wang, Ke Tang, Kai Feng and Weifeng Lv, published
paper on March 19, predicting Covid-19’s transmission ability will reduce a lot
by the end of March in some countries. The research was conducted in 100 Chinese
cities having 40 plus cases. The data collected showed that high temperature and
high relative humidity significantly lessen the transmission of COVID-19.
Chinese researcher also inspected data of other countries. They said: “In the
early dates of the outbreak, countries with relatively lower air temperature and
lower humidity (e.g. Korea, Japan and Iran) saw severe outbreaks than the warmer
and more humid countries (e.g. Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand) do.”
Chinese researchers also analyzed the phenomenon of spread of other viral
diseases. For example, influenza virus, which is also a coronavirus, is more
stable in cold temperature, and respiratory droplets (containers of viruses)
remain in air for longer time in dry air. Further, cold and dry weather can also
weaken the hosts’ immunity and make them more susceptible to the virus. These
mechanisms are also likely to apply to the COVID-19 transmission. Our result is
also consistent with the evidence that high temperature and high relative
humidity reduce the viability of SARS coronavirus.”
The paper stated: “In July, the arrival of summer and rainy season in the
northern hemisphere can effectively reduce the transmission of the COVID-19;
however, risks remain in some countries in the southern hemisphere (e.g.
Australia and South Africa.
A study conducted 10 years ago by Kate Templeton, the University of Edinburgh
UK, found that three coronaviruses – all obtained from patients, showed “marked
winter seasonality”. These viruses seemed to cause infections mainly between
December and April – a similar pattern was observed in influenza virus.
There are some early hints that Covid-19 may also vary with the seasons. The
recent spread of COVID-19 outbreaks around the world seems to suggest, it has a
preference for cool and dry conditions
An unpublished analysis comparing the weather in 500 localities with Covid-19
cases, in different parts of world; suggest a link between the spread of the
virus and temperature, wind speed and relative humidity. Another unpublished
study has also revealed that higher temperatures are linked to lower incidence
Yet, another unpublished research predicts that temperate warm and cold climates
areas are the most vulnerable to the current Covid-19 outburst, followed by arid
regions. Tropical areas of the world are less likely to be affected.
A study of the University of Maryland says that the virus has spread most in
regions of the world where average temperatures was around 5-110C (41-520F) and
relative humidity was low.
Qasim Bukhari and Yusuf Jameel, both from the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology, analyzed global cases of COVID-19 and found that 90% of the
infections occurred in areas that are between 3 to 17 oC and with an absolute
humidity of 4 to 9 (g/m3). (Absolute humidity is defined by how much moisture is
in the air, regardless of temperature.)
In countries with an average temperature greater than 18 0C and an absolute
humidity greater than 9 g/m3, the number of COVID-19 cases is less than 6% of
the global cases. (Lahore has temperature of 210C and humidity 68% today) It
clearly suggests "that the transmission of 2019-nCoV virus might have been less
efficient in warmer humid climate so far," the authors wrote. Humidity
especially might play a role, given that most of the transmission of COVID-19
has happened in relatively less humid areas.
Dr Eic Berg disclosed in his video lecture that for every 1-degree rise of
temperature and 1% relative humidity, there is decrease in Ro value (Effective
Reproduction which show how fast virus from patient is reproducing and spreading
to healthy person) by 0.0383 and 0.0224 respectively. And to stop the epidemic,
Ro Value is needed to be less than 1. So, the summer and rainy season can
effectively decrease the spread of COVID-19.
In the beginning of this outbreak in January-February, in warmer and humid
countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand had much smaller outbreaks than the
colder and lesser humid countries like China, Iran, Italy, South Korea and japan.
Chines reports further says: “If we plug the normal summer temperature and
relative humidity of Tokyo (280C and 85%, respectively) in Equation (1), the
transmission of the COVID-19 in Tokyo will be seriously reduced between March
and the Olympics….” The estimated R Value will decrease from 1.914 to 0.92(a 46%
drop). So there is great likelihood that pandemic will slide downward. In
Pakistan, summer temperature touch 40-450C and even 500C, so the Covid outbreak
will be dramatically low. At present, we should observe strict social distancing
to put breaks on the corona onslaught.
SIXTH REPORT OF COMPUTER
One intriguing study by scientists in China suggests there is some sort of
relationship between Covid-19 and the weather conditions. They looked at nearly
2,300 deaths in Wuhan and compared them to the humidity, temperature and
pollution levels on the day they occurred. Although it has yet to be published
in an academic journal, their research suggests mortality rates were lower on
days when the humidity levels and temperatures were higher. Their analysis also
suggests that on days where the maximum and minimum temperature ranges were
greater, there were higher levels of mortality. But this work is largely also
based on computer modelling, so the exact nature of this relationship, and
whether it will be seen in other parts of the world, is still to be explored.
The weather can also mess with our own immune systems to make us more vulnerable
to infections, too. Evidence suggest that vitamin D levels in our bodies can
have an effect on how vulnerable we are against infectious diseases. In the
winter, our bodies make less vitamin D from sunlight exposure, mainly because we
spend more time indoors and also wrap ourselves in clothing, thus blocking UV to
make vitamin D from ergo sterol present in our skin. But some studies have found
this theory is unlikely to account for seasonal variation seen in diseases like
Whether cold weather weakens our immune systems? Some studies advocate it does,
but others find the cold can actually boost the number of cells that defend our
bodies from infection.
There is stronger evidence that humidity can have a greater impact on our
vulnerability to infection. When the air is dry, it is thought to reduce the
amount of mucous coating of our lungs and airways. This sticky secretion(mucous)
forms a natural defense barrier against infections and when it is lesser, one is
more vulnerable to virus.
In sum, at high temperature, virus bilayer fat coating will become soft, fragile
and easy to be disrupted. In low temperature, fat coating hardens into a
rubber-like state and thus protect the virus for longer when it is outside the
The rate of evaporation increases in summer, water film around virus will
evaporate and virus may go to ground instead of flying and infecting. Ro in
northern hemisphere is 2.5 and southern has 1.2, it also hints effect of
The wind speed may also be useful as it will increase rate of evaporation and
can also diffuse virus to a level making it is less harmful.
Temperature and humidity in Pakistan will increase day by day. At present (today
25/03/2020) the temperature of Lahore is 210C; humidity 68% and wind speed is 8
km/hour. In coming days, temperature will rise gradually. The past average
temperature of Lahore in March is 270C; April 340C; May 39oC; June 40oC. So if
the above reports are true, that apparently look like, we are going to have a
sharp steep slope in cases in coming days.
Second, wind will turn to storm in April to further ease out the issue, we are
facing now. And then in raining season humidity will increase to further lessen
the crisis. In nutshell, all the three weather factors, pointed by reporter, are
tilting in our fovour.IT IS A BIG HAPPY NEWS!
In the meanwhile, social isolation policy is required to be observed strictly
with regular handwashing.
Our society is divided on covid response; upper class and upper middle class,
who has access to social media, are getting panic while lower middle class and
lower class is chilling and even mocking people adopting preventive measures.
There is no need to get panicky and also there is no room to be careless. Both
attitude will drag to unnecessary ugly situation, sanity should prevail. Halcyon
days are ahead !