An Integrated Approach to Health and Wellbeing in Response to Climate Change

Sotiris Vardoulakis, Hilary Bambrick

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapterpeer-review

Abstract

Climate change caused by the emission of greenhouse gasses from the burning of fossil fuels and other sources is detrimental to health and wellbeing. From intensified and more frequent extreme weather to long-term geographic and seasonal shifts in temperature and rainfall, the adverse health effects are both direct and indirect and unevenly distributed, with poorer nations and people disproportionately affected. From injuries and loss of life from extreme events such as heatwaves, wildfires, and floods, to effects on allergens and pollutants, to reduced food yields and changing patterns of infectious diseases, climate change endangers human lives. Mental health and social capital may also be diminished by climate change as communities and livelihoods are hit by drought, rising sea levels, or through trauma triggered by extreme events. As some level of climate change is already occurring and will continue for some decades even with urgent action to reduce fossil fuel use, adaptation to protect health from its worst effects is now essential. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting to climate change can bring multiple benefits to health and wellbeing from improved air quality in cities, healthier diets, and more sustainable healthcare, transport, and housing conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationToward an Integrated Science of Wellbeing
EditorsElizabeth Rieger, Robert Costanza, Ida Kubiszewski, Paul Dugdale
PublisherVictoria Oxford University Press
Chapter19
Pages436-451
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780197567609
ISBN (Print)9780197567579
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2023
Externally publishedYes

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