Climate change is undoubtedly the greatest challenge facing the planet. The Lancet in 2015 recognized climate change as the biggest public health challenge of this century and mitigating it as the biggest public health opportunity.
Scientists and public health experts agree that climate change will affect the health of Pennsylvania, the nation and the planet in a wide variety of ways.
Increased rates of asthma and heat-related deaths.
Increased occurrences of extreme weather that will lead to injury, accidents, and in the worst cases - deaths.
Increased rates and geography of vector-borne illnesses, from Zika to Lyme disease.
Vulnerable populations such as children, elderly, people of low socioeconomic status will suffer the most.
For these reasons and many more, it’s crucial that we take steps as quickly as possible to tackle climate change and do our part to protect the public’s health.
The good news is that while there are grave threats facing the planet from climate change, we have the tools and technology at our finger tips to be able to address this challenge—but time is of the essence.
Given this, the strategy that will be implemented by the Philadelphia Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) will be the following:
Ensure that public health professionals and public health messaging are front-and-center in the Pennsylvania coalition’s efforts to tackle climate change.
Ensure that decision makers are hearing from health professionals and their concern about climate change.
Mobilizing and expanding the network of public health organizations, officials and experts in Pennsylvania who can speak to the issue of the threats posed by climate change.
Share this information with your Governor via Twitter or Facebook. Urge them to support the Clean Power Plan--because climate change makes you sick! #YesCPP
Learn how your state is complying with the Clean Power Plan
Join PSR's "Clean Energy Saves Lives" campaign
Each month you'll take one simple step to promote clean renewables and energy efficiency
Review PSR's resources to learn more:
American Chemical Society (2015, March 22). Air pollutants could boost potency of common airborne allergens. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 28, 2016
George Mason University (2016, March 23). How Medical Associations Can Engage Policymakers on their State Clean Power Plans. Center for Climate Change Communication
NASA (2008, June 15). Global Climate Change: Evidence. Retrieved January 14, 2015
U.S. Global Change Research Program (2016, April 4.) The Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment
This government study documents "what we know about the impacts of climate change on public health, and the confidence with which we know it." It examines a broad range of health impacts as they affect the health of the American people, not just in the future but right now.