Global warming to bring misery to hay fever sufferers

Pollen levels could rise as much as 12 times in some areas

Updated: 
Climate Change Could Bring Misery for Hay Fever Sufferers
Scientists say climate change could cause misery for hay fever sufferers bringing severe allergy attacks to those affected.

Native North American ragweed has spread across warmer parts of Europe since the 1960s and while it is still rare in the UK, experts predict it could scatter pollen throughout the country by 2050.

According to the Guardian, the plant's pollen induces severe allergic reactions and extends the hay fever season to autumn.

University of Leicester researchers recorded airborne ragweed pollen levels in the East Midlands last year.

Ragweed is far more potent than grass and scientists believe it could pose a serious public health problem.

Their research found that pollen levels could rise as much as 12 times in some areas.

The Daily Mail reports that scientists said: "Once established, ragweed is difficult to eradicate because of its long-lived seed, its capacity to re-sprout after cutting and its propensity to evolve resistance to herbicides.

"Our results indicate that controlling the current European ragweed invasion will become more difficult in the future as the environment will be more favourable for ragweed growth and spread, highlighting the need for the development of effective and regionally coordinated eradication programmes."

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