Climate Change and Children's Environmental Health


 

There is near scientific unanimity that global climate change is occurring, that it is caused and/or exacerbated by human activities, and that the effects on human health and well-being are potentially very serious. Children are noted as particularly vulnerable.

 

We know that some of the major direct health effects of global climate change include:

 

  1. Casualties and trauma during floods, typhoons, storms, hurricanes and other natural disasters;  and
  2. Increased morbidity and mortality due to ischemic heart disease, respiratory disease, and disease of the nervous system, kidneys, etc. during hot weather. 

 

 

Indirect health effects include:

 

  1. Increased incidence of infectious and parasitogenic diseases due to increased rainfalls;
  2. Higher risk of intestinal infections due to the breakdown of water supply and sanitation networks; and
  3. Increased morbidity and mortality from suspended particulates in air and other air pollutants during forest fires. 

 

 

World-wide, other issues such as forced migration, food security, and limited access to resources including arable land and water will have an impact on all members of society. All of these potential effects have enormous outcomes for children.

 

With the World Health Organization estimating that 34% of all childhood illnesses throughout the world are due to modifiable environmental factors, our role in the field of climate change is crucial. The goals of CEHN are to educate the wider public about the children’s environmental health consequences of climate disruption and to provide interventions and alternatives.

 

Navigate through the tabs above to learn more about CEHN's climate change activities.