The Stream

How does climate change affect your health?

On Thursday, February 10 at 19:30GMT:
Climate change is the single biggest health threat facing humanity, and no one is safe from it.

Around the world, health care providers say said they are already seeing the effects of climate change on their patients. Warmer global temperatures have led to more frequent and longer heat waves, which can cause heat stroke and dehydration. Floods have become more common and severe, spreading bacteria, viruses, and other microbial contaminants. Climate events, like hurricanes, droughts, and wildfires have increased the risk of respiratory, cardiovascular, and gastrointestinal diseases.

The World Health Organization (WHO) projects that between 2030 and 2050 climate change will cause 250,000 additional deaths globally, and failing to implement long-term solutions puts everyone at risk for a number of climate-sensitive health impacts.

Last fall, representatives of the WHO took their health argument to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow with the hope of persuading countries to take more action in preventing global warming. The group’s efforts paid off. More than fifty countries made the commitment to build low carbon and climate-resilient health systems, all part of the COP26 Health Programme, the aim of which is to place a stronger health focus around the United Nations’ climate mission.

In this episode we’ll explore how the warming temperatures will change our global health, and what measures need to be taken to mitigate it.

In this episode of The Stream, we are joined by:
Maria Neira, @DrMariaNeira
Director, Public Health and Environment at WHO

Marina Romanello, @MarinaRomanell2
Executive Director, Lancet Countdown

Emaline Laney
Medical Student, Emory University