Every child born today will be impacted by the climate crisis with Courtney Howard
Every child born today will be impacted by the climate crisis and affected at every stage of their lives.
Canadian sub-arctic is already 2.5 °C warmer than 70 years ago.
Unfortunately, all sorts of health impacts are linked to the climate crisis.
Heat stress, chronic disease from air pollution, infectious diseases, malnutrition, famine, displacement… to name a few.
We are already resigned to increased global warming which is now locked in for decades to come, so healthcare professionals need to find ways to cope with the ramifications of this inevitability.
We need to take action on two broad fronts, firstly Mitigation to prevent further rises in global temperatures by decarbonising, and secondly Adaptation to prevent as best we can the catastrophic effects on our patients’ health.
The choices we make right now will have massive impacts on our children and their children. Every child born today will be impacted by the climate crisis.
We can take action at a Micro level (our personal actions), Meso level (our hospitals, universities, and local communities), and Macro level (the whole of government).
The cost of taking action on the climate crisis will be high but the cost of inaction will be way higher.
It’s paramount we work together towards a healthier, sustainable energy source.
Politicians have responded to Covid but why haven’t they responded to climate change evidence?
A united front by healthcare professionals will deliver solidarity and make an impact.
Courtney Howard is an Emergency Physician in Canada’s subarctic, President of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE), Chair of the advocacy subcommittee of the WHO-Civil Society Working Group on Climate Change and Health, and is on the Steering Committee for the Planetary Health Alliance and is Policy Coordinator for ClimateCODA.
Courtney has led research on menstrual cups and wildfires, was the 2018 International Policy Coordinator for the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change, and has participated in advocacy around divestment, carbon pricing, active transport, plant-rich diets, coal phase-out, hydraulic fracturing, wildfires, and the mental health impacts of climate change.
Coda EARTH 2021
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- Every child born today will be impacted by the climate crisis with Courtney Howard
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