Researchers have long known that people can become more aggressive when overheated. A new study looking at crime data in Los Angeles from 2010 to 2017 shows that violent crime rises when temperatures exceed a pleasant 65° to 70° Fahrenheit. Researchers found strong geographic differences. “Beverly Hills doesn’t have much violent crime on any of those days. But in the poorest communities in Los Angeles, you see a larger correlation between heat and violence,” says environmental economist Matthew Kahn of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Compared with wealthier city residents, poor people in Los Angeles have less space and far fewer air conditioning units, Kahn adds. Also on the research team behind this study is NTU Asst Prof Tang Cheng Keat.
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