Why health journals have called for climate action

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What is the News?

Editors of more than 220 leading health journals from all over the world have published a joint editorial asking governments to take immediate and more ambitious climate action to hold global temperatures from rising beyond 1.5°C from pre-industrial times.

Purpose of the Joint Editorial

The joint editorial in health journals comes ahead of COP26, the 26th edition of the annual UN climate conference, in Glasgow, UK. Before that, a similar UN meeting on biodiversity is scheduled in Kunming, China. 

Hence, the editorial is part of the exercise to create momentum for concrete and ambitious decisions at these meetings.

What are the concerns highlighted by the editors?

Climate change has several adverse health impacts both direct and indirect. Heat-related diseases triggered by extreme heat events are an example of the direct health impacts of climate change. 

Changing crop patterns, declining yields, water scarcity, and extreme precipitation are expected to have health consequences as well.

The World Health Organization estimates that about 250,000 excess deaths are likely to be caused by climate change-induced factors — malnutrition, malaria, diarrhoea, and heat stress — between 2030 and 2050.

What should be done to stop this impact?

Governments should take immediate and more ambitious climate action to hold global temperatures from rising beyond 1.5°C from pre-industrial times. 

They should treat climate change with the same kind of urgency that was shown in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic.

Source: This post is based on the article “Why health journals have called for climate action” published in Indian Express on 7th September 2021.

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