Climate Change and Chaos: A Deadly Mix in Honduras Dengue Epidemic

“Rising temperatures are increasing the range of disease-bearing mosquitoes globally. But in Honduras, the effects are compounded by government dysfunction and criminal gangs.”

“CHOLOMA, Honduras — More than 400 people died this year as one of the worst dengue epidemics on record swept through Central America — a type of outbreak that some scientists and public health officials are warning is likely to become more frequent and more widespread because of climate change.

But while climate change is threatening to increase the spread of dengue worldwide by expanding the range of the mosquitoes that carry the virus, the disease has already found an especially fertile breeding ground in Honduras, for reasons that go beyond the environment.

In Honduras, which accounted for more than 40 percent of the dengue deaths in Central America this year, according to the Pan American Health Organization, the effects of climate change have been compounded by government dysfunction, political tumult and public apathy.”

Kirk Semple reports for the New York Times December 29, 2019.