Πέμπτη, 2 Νοεμβρίου 2017

The Lancet Countdown research shows climate change may have started killing us

Climate change has caused severe harm to human health since the year 2000 by stoking more heat waves, the spread of some mosquito-borne diseases and under-nutrition as crops fail, the announcement of the latest Lancet Countdown  research sturdy shows. The Lancet Countdown tracks progress on health and climate change and provides an independent assessment of the health effects of climate change, the implementation of the Paris Agreement,1 and the health implications of these actions. It follows on from the work of the 2015 Lancet Commission on Health and Climate Change, which concluded that anthropogenic climate change threatens to undermine the past 50 years of gains in public health, and conversely, that a comprehensive response to climate change could be “the greatest global health opportunity of the 21st century”.  The Lancet Countdown is a collaboration between 24 academic institutions and intergovernmental organisations based in every continent and with representation from a wide range of disciplines. The collaboration includes climate scientists, ecologists, economists, engineers, experts in energy, food, and transport systems, geographers, mathematicians, social and political scientists, public health professionals, and doctors. It reports annual indicators across five sections: climate change impacts, exposures, and vulnerability; adaptation planning and resilience for health; mitigation actions and health co-benefits; economics and finance; and public and political engagement.

Basic outcome of the study includes these observations:

> The human symptoms of climate change are unequivocal and potentially irreversible—affecting the health of populations around the world today. The evidence is clear that exposure to more frequent and intense heatwaves is increasing, with an estimated 125 million additional vulnerable adults exposed to heatwaves between 2000 and 2016. During this time, increasing ambient temperatures have resulted in an estimated reduction of 5·3% in outdoor manual labour productivity worldwide. As a whole, the frequency of weather-related disasters has increased by 46% since 2000, with no clear upward or downward trend in the lethality of these extreme events, potentially suggesting the beginning of an adaptive response to climate change. Yet the impacts of climate change are projected to worsen with time, and current levels of adaptation will become insufficient in the future.

> The delayed response to climate change over the past 25 years has jeopardised human life and livelihoods.

> Although progress has been historically slow, the past 5 years have seen an accelerated response, and in 2017, momentum is building across a number of sectors; the direction of travel is set, with clear and unprecedented opportunities for public health.

There are 40 indicators analyzed fully at the site of The Lancet, and the access to the full report is free, provided you register (also for free). Find out more HERE.

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