NOV 20, 2019 12:42 PM PST

Climate Crisis Will Impact Children The Most

WRITTEN BY: Tiffany Dazet

Many are already feeling the impacts of climate change around the world. Heat waves, severe storms, and flooding have affected humans of all ages. However, a new report from the medical journal The Lancet warns that if we continue “business as usual,” the health of children born now will be heavily impacted by our changing climate throughout their lifetime. The report states, “without accelerated intervention, this new era will come to define the health of people at every stage of their lives.”

This report was published just last week and is the collaborative result of research from 35 academic institutions and UN agencies worldwide. Contributors include climate scientists, geographers, engineers, food and transport experts, economists, and more. The video below features a summary of the report.

This report uses 41 key indicators across five main domains to provide an annually updated profile on climate change and related health impacts. According to the executive summary of the report, children born today will enter “a world that is more than four degrees warmer than the pre-industrial average.” Key concerns include food production and security, disease transmission, air pollution, extreme weather conditions (including extreme heat). These issues could have a snowball effect and risk causing migration, poverty, violent conflicts, and mental illness.

An article from Scientific American regarding the report states that health impacts start at birth with a higher risk of low-birth-weight and death. Through childhood and adolescence risks include potential lung-problems, asthma attacks, and insect-borne diseases. Additionally, older adults are at higher risk due to extreme heat. According to the report, in 2018, an additional 220 million older adults (aged over 65) were exposed to at least one heatwave.

It’s not all bad news, as the report states that some regions of the world are beginning to adapt. Fifty percent of countries and 69% of cities assessed reported either initiating or completing a climate change risk assessment or adaptation plan. Additionally, 70 countries reported the implementation of meteorological services focused on the health sector, and 109 countries reported “medium to high implementation of a national health emergency framework.”

Nonetheless, The Lancet report strongly recommends “accelerated ambition and action” to keep the world temperature rise below the globally agreed-upon two degrees Celsius.

Sources: The Lancet, Scientific American

About the Author
  • Tiffany grew up in Southern California, where she attended San Diego State University. She graduated with a degree in Biology with a marine emphasis, thanks to her love of the ocean and wildlife. With 13 years of science writing under her belt, she now works as a freelance writer in the Pacific Northwest.
You May Also Like
SEP 02, 2021
Cancer
When Cholesterol Doesn't Kill Cancer, it Makes it Stronger!
SEP 02, 2021
When Cholesterol Doesn't Kill Cancer, it Makes it Stronger!
High cholesterol is associated with an increased risk of several types of cancer, and cancer patients with high choleste ...
SEP 09, 2021
Health & Medicine
Cannabis and Pain Management- A Double Edged Sword?
SEP 09, 2021
Cannabis and Pain Management- A Double Edged Sword?
In 2016 it was estimated by the CDC that 20.4% of Americans have chronic pain. Chronic pain is a primary reaso ...
SEP 10, 2021
Earth & The Environment
Wildfire Effects on Air Quality
SEP 10, 2021
Wildfire Effects on Air Quality
Wildfires are becoming a common occurrence in the Western US, and wildfires are expected to increase in severity and num ...
SEP 10, 2021
Health & Medicine
Intervention for Endocarditis- What Kind of Valve is Best?
SEP 10, 2021
Intervention for Endocarditis- What Kind of Valve is Best?
  Infective endocarditis is caused when a bacterium such as staphylococcus enters the bloodstream and infects heart ...
SEP 14, 2021
Health & Medicine
A lower sodium diet decreases the chance of stroke and other heart disease
SEP 14, 2021
A lower sodium diet decreases the chance of stroke and other heart disease
A new study found that using a low salt alternative lowered the risk of stroke and other heart disease
SEP 23, 2021
Drug Discovery & Development
The FDA approves the first and only oral treatment for a certain non-small cell lung cancer.
SEP 23, 2021
The FDA approves the first and only oral treatment for a certain non-small cell lung cancer.
Last week, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted approval for the first oral therapy to ...
Loading Comments...