The health of people is fundamentally threatened by climate change. It impacts the physical environment and all facets of human and natural systems, such as the health systems’ operation and the social and economic backgrounds. As a result, it intensifies the threat and can undo decades of advancements in health.
Storms, intense heat waves, floods, droughts, and wildfires are among the weather and climate events becoming more common and severe as climatic conditions change. These climate and weather-related risks impact health in both direct and indirect ways, raising the possibility of noncommunicable diseases, infectious disease onset and spread, mortality, and medical emergencies ¹.
Direct Effects of Global Warming on Health
One of the most critical direct effects of climate change on public health is heat waves. Dehydration, heat exhaustion, heatstroke, and even death ¹ can result from them. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that between 2030 and 2050, heat stress alone will be the primary cause of an additional 250,000 fatalities annually due to climate change ¹.
Pollution of Air
Another direct effect of climate change on human health is air pollution. Lung cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and asthma are among the respiratory conditions it can cause ². Studies indicate that lowering greenhouse gas emissions by making better decisions about food, energy consumption, and transportation can have a significant positive impact on health, especially when it comes to lower air pollution ¹.
Severe Weather Incidents
The public’s health is also directly impacted by extreme weather events, including storms, floods, droughts, and wildfires caused by climate change. They may result in drowning during floods or injury from falling debris ·.
Climate Change’s Indirect Effects on Public Health
The reduction in freshwater availability for irrigation and its impact on crop yields are two ways climate change is upsetting food systems. Undernourishment and malnutrition may result from this disturbance in impoverished nations.
Infectious diseases, including cholera, dengue fever, Zika, West Nile, Lyme, and malaria, are becoming more common as a result of climate change.
Issues with Mental Health
Anxiety, sadness, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other mental health conditions are being brought on by climate change, which is affecting mental health.
The health of people is seriously threatened by climate change. It impacts every facet of health, including livelihoods, clean air, and food systems. By 2030, the direct expenses of health harm are projected to reach between $2 and $4 billion annually ³. Even more important are the indirect effects.
The health benefits of lowering greenhouse gas emissions through improved food, energy, and transportation choices can be substantial. To reduce the dangers associated with climate change, avoid accidents and diseases, and improve public health readiness overall, action must be taken immediately.
This essay was helpful to you. Please get in touch if you have any queries or remarks regarding this subject or any other topic about public health or climate change.
¹: World Health Organization (WHO) information climate change and health
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is shown as
³: Medicine Control and Prevention (CDC)
⁊: FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization)
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
American Psychological Association (APA)Mental-health-climate.pdf
(1) World Health Organization (WHO) on climate change. Climate change and health can be found at https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail.
(2) Human Health and Climate Change | US EPA. www.epa.gov/climateimpacts/human-health-and-climate-change.
(3) Health Effects of Climate | CDC. http://www.cdc.gov/effects/default.htm on climate change and health.
(4) Climate Change’s Effects on Human Health – National Institute of… Health impacts of climate change: https://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/programs/climatechange/index.cfm…
(5) The CDC Foundation: Climate Change and Health. The CDCC Foundation’s website, climate-health.org