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A delegate wears a face mask at the COP26 U.N. climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland A delegate wears a face mask at the COP26 U.N. climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland, Oct. 31, 2021 (AP photo by Alastair Grant).

The Climate Crisis Is Also a Global Health Crisis

Monday, Nov. 1, 2021

Climate change is bad for your health. That is the unequivocal finding of The Lancet’s annual “Countdown” report, which was published last week by a team of nearly 100 scientists from 43 institutions around the world. Global warming, the authors write, is not just an environmental disaster, but is also exposing humans to searing heat and extreme weather events; increasing the transmission of infectious diseases; exacerbating food, water and financial insecurity; endangering sustainable development; and worsening global inequality. And, they conclude, the data in this year’s report should represent a “code red for a healthy future.”

For the past two years, the coronavirus pandemic has naturally been the overwhelming focus of global public health discussions, having infected nearly 250 million people, while killing almost 5 million and upending the world economy. The health effects of climate change have been more subtle, yet relentless. The pandemic will pass, sooner or later, but the health challenges created by global warming will last decades, even centuries.  ...

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