Ireland’s crazy, unpredictable weather might actually be beneficial for the people that live there. New research has suggested that changing weather makes people less violent and aggressive.
The study, CLASH (Climate Aggression, and Self-control in Humans), reveals why hot weather combined with less variation in seasonal temperatures can “lead to a faster life strategy, less focus on the future and less self-control, all of which contribute to aggression and violence,” the Irish Independent reports.
Dr. Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at Ohio State University, said: “We see evidence of a faster life strategy in hotter climates with less temperature variation — they are less strict about time, they have less use of birth control, they have children earlier and more often.”
People who live in regions with frequent warm spells are “irritated” and are more likely to be outdoors interacting with people so “naturally run into more opportunities for conflict,” states the study.
The research also suggests that the problem is not just with hotter temperatures. Climates that have less seasonal variation in temperature can also invite to violence.
Study co-author Maria Rinderu, of Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, said: “Less variation in temperature, combined with heat, brings some measure of consistency to daily life.”
According to researcher Paul Van Lange, people have to plan and prepare more when there are variations in temperature, thus leaving less time for conflict.
“Planning in agriculture, hoarding, or simply preparing for cold winters shapes the culture in many ways, often with people not even noticing it,” he said.
“If there is less variation, you’re freer to do what you want now, because you’re not preparing foods or chopping firewood or making winter clothes to get you through the winter.
“You also may be more concerned with the immediate stress that comes along with parasites and other risks of hot climates, such as venomous animals."
Said Bushman: “We believe CLASH can help account for differences in aggression and violence both within and between countries around the world. We think it provides a strong framework for understanding the violence differences we see around the world.”