Correlation between weather, population size and COVID-19 pandemic: a study of Brazilian capitals

Renato Americo Araujo Neto, Géssyca Cavalcante Melo


Objective: To analyze the correlation between weather, population size and cases of COVID-19 in the capitals of Brazil. Methods: All confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection, from the first confirmed case from February 26 until May 01, 2020 were included. For weather variables, average temperature (°C), dew point (°C), average humidity (%) and wind speed (m s-1) were extracted from the Instituto de Meteorologia database. The population size of each capital was used as a control variable, with data obtained from Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística. Spearman rank correlation tests were utilized to examine the correlation between variables. Results: The analysis showed a significant and strong positive correlation between the total cases of COVID-19 and the population size (p<0,01). There was a significant positive correlation with the average humidity of the air and cumulative cases (p<0,05). There was no significant correlation with other climate variables. Conclusion: Our results confront some expectations commented around the world about a possible seasonality of COVID-19 during periods of low humidity and can assist government and health authorities in decision making to control the pandemic. Studies in other regions are important to strengthen the findings.


SARS-CoV-2; Weather; Temperature; Humidity; Population

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Direitos autorais 2020 Journal of Health & Biological Sciences

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