World leaders urged to consider health benefits of climate action

(The Guardian, 12 Oct 2021) Hundreds of international health organisations and professionals sign open letter to politicians ahead of Cop26.

More than 400 international health organisations and professionals, representing two-thirds of global healthcare workers, have signed an open letter calling on politicians to consider the health benefits of climate action ahead of the Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow.

“We know that climate change is impacting people’s health, this is increasingly visible around the world. We also know that many solutions to address climate change offer tremendous health co-benefits,” said Dr Jeni Miller of Global Climate and Health Alliance, the organisation which drafted the letter. “The health community is really seeing that if we don’t step up and call for action on climate change, we’re failing the patients and the communities that we care for.”

The letter lists 7 million premature deaths a year due to pollution and disturbance of global food systems by extreme weather as some of the health detriments caused by the climate crisis. It also argues that the costs of policies such as improving the cleanliness of air and water and creating more secure food supplies would be offset by savings in healthcare costs.

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The Guardian, 12 Oct 2021: World leaders urged to consider health benefits of climate action