Allergy season is getting longer and more severe in dozens of US cities: Here’s where

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Allergy season is getting longer and more severe in dozens of US cities: Here’s where | The Hill

(NEXSTAR) – If you’re suffering from allergies right now, we’ve got some bad news for you. Chances are you live in a city where the allergy season is growing longer and worse.

That’s because as the climate has warmed, there are fewer days with hard freezes. That gives pollen producers, grasses and weeds a longer period of time to thrive (and make your eyes water). The 2024 season has kicked off especially early, experts say.

It’s not just that allergy season is growing longer – there’s also evidence it’s getting more intense. One study looked at the impact of increased carbon dioxide on ragweed plants. It found that with more carbon dioxide in the environment, ragweed plants grew larger and produced significantly more pollen.

Do you live in an ‘allergy capital’? These US cities are worst for allergies

Climate Central, an organization of scientists and journalists that studies the impacts of climate change, analyzed data from nearly 200 U.S. cities to determine where the allergy problems are growing worse. They found that since 1970, the allergy season has grown longer in 164 cities.

On average, these cities saw the season lengthen by 19 days.

The cities where allergy season lengthened the most since 1970 were:

Reno, Nevada: 95 days longer Las Cruces, New Mexico: 65 days longer Medford, Oregon: 61 days longer Boise, Idaho: 51 days longer Tupelo, Mississippi: 50 days longer Missoula, Montana: 48 days longer Myrtle Beach, South Carolina: 48 days longer El Paso, Texas: 47 days longer Toledo, Ohio: 45 days longer Eugene, Oregon: 40 days longer Helena, Montana: 40 days longer Concord, New Hampshire: 39 days longer Albuquerque/Santa Fe, New Mexico: 37 days longer Roanoke, Virginia: 37 days longer Manchester, New Hampshire: 35 days longer Duluth, Minnesota: 34 days longer Atlanta, Georgia: 33 days longer Lansing, Michigan: 33 days longer Minneapolis/St. Paul: 33 days longer Madison, Wisconsin: 32 days longer

While 164 U.S. cities were found to have their allergy seasons growing longer, about 30 cities saw the opposite trend: shorter allergy seasons since 1970. Chief among them was Ottumwa, Iowa, where the allergy season is about 19 days shorter than it used to be.

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