Do you have a bad case of poison ivy? According to "The Early Show" you can blame that on those that drive SUV’s and cook on the grill. On the July 2 edition’s usually non-controversial "Health Watch" segment, host Harry Smith began the segment stating "scientists say [poison ivy] is worse than ever for a number of reasons, including global warming."
"Early Show" medical contributor Dr. Emily Senay cited a study that "rising levels of carbon monoxide" is "spurring poison ivy to grow bigger, to grow faster, and to produce a more potent form of this oil that it makes, urushiol."
The relevant portions of the interview are below.
HARRY SMITH: This morning in "Health Watch," poison ivy. Scientists say it is worse than ever for a number of reasons, including global warming. Our Dr. Emily Senay is here to tell us what's going on outside. Good morning Emily.
SMITH: Why is it getting nastier? Is it our imagination?
DR EMILY SENAY: This is interesting and it's a little, you know, disturbing on some level. The researchers are now saying, researchers at Duke and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, are saying that rising levels of carbon dioxide, that's what we've been talking so much about that's been going up. It's been linked to global warming, is actually spurring the poison ivy on to grow bigger, to grow faster and to produce a more potent form of this oil that it makes, the urushiol. So a quantity of oil that several decades ago might not have caused a reaction in someone, now probably will.
SMITH: So it's becoming more toxic?
SENAY: Becoming more toxic, that's exactly right.