Washington, D.C., July 17, 2008 –
In support of continued efforts to research and analyze the health impacts of climate change, the American Public Health Association (APHA) applauds today’s release by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of a report that discusses the potential impacts of climate change on human health, human welfare and communities in the United States.
“With growing recognition of the important connection between climate change and our health, we are pleased that a synthesis of the available data has been released,” said Georges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP (E), executive director of APHA. “It builds on the work done by APHA and all of our partners during this year’s National Public Health Week, which was themed “Climate Change: Our Health in the Balance.”
The report, entitled “Analyses of the Effects of Global Change on Human Health and Welfare and Human Systems,” examines how climate change will affect important human dimensions, especially those related to human health, settlements and welfare. In regards to health, the report examines adaptation strategies aimed at responding to the challenges and opportunities posed by climate change; looks at different climate change factors and addresses the potential impacts, populations that are particularly vulnerable, and research and data gaps; and discusses how some individuals and communities may be disproportionately affected by climate change.
“This report joins the growing body of evidence indicating that we need to not only work to mitigate climate change, but must also invest in our public health infrastructure to ensure our ability to minimize likely impacts,” Benjamin said.
The Global Change Research Program in EPA’s Office of Research and Development led the development of this report. It is one of 21 synthesis and assessment products commissioned by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program and is available for download at http://www.climatescience.gov/.