A recent study, led by an
Indian-origin researcher in the US, has revealed that temperature and humidity do not
play a significant part in the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The research, published in the
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, noted that
COVID-19 transmission from one individual to the other depends almost entirely
on human behaviour, irrespective of hot or cold weather.

researchers also suggested that while weather may directly not impact the virus
outbreak, it can, however, influence the environment and human behaviour on which
the transmission indirectly depends.

What were the basis of Evaluation?

  • The study defined weather as
    “equivalent air temperature,” which combines temperature and humidity
    into a single value.
  • It observed this value with the virus
    spread from March to July in different areas ranging from US states and
    counties,  countries, regions and the
    world at large.
  • The study then examined human behavioural
    pattern in a general sense and did not connect it to how the weather may have
    influenced it.
  • The researchers adjusted the observation
    in a way that population differences did not impact the results. 

What are the Findings?

The observers
found that the weather’s relative importance at the county scale was less than
3%, with no indication of a particular weather prompting spread over another.

On the contrary, the data displayed a
clear influence of human behaviour and the
external influence of individual behaviors.

“The effect of weather is low and
other features such as mobility have more impact than weather. In terms of
relative importance, weather is one of the last parameters,” said Dev
Niyogi, a professor at the University Of Texas (UT) at Austin, US, who led the

time and spending time away from home were the key factors contributing to COVID-19
growth, with a relative significance of about 34% and 26% respectively

researchers also noted that the other two important factors were population and
urban density, with a relative importance of about 23% and 13 %, respectively.