April 06, 2016
Government chided for ignoring climate health impact
OraTaiao: The NZ Climate and Health Council is urging the government to follow the lead of the United States and report on the health impacts of climate change.
The White House this week released a 300-page scientific report saying the risks to human health will continue to grow as the climate changes.
Those risks include people who work outside dying because they are unable to control their body temperature.
OraTaiao spokesperson Rhys Jones of Ngati Kahungunu says there has been no formal health risk assessment here and the health impacts have been ignored in climate policy making.
Maori, Pacific people, children, the elderly, and those on low incomes will face the greatest health impacts in the short-term, but very few people will be immune to the widespread health and social threats of unchecked climate change.
Dr Jones says the government is also ignoring potential co-benefits, as action to reduce emissions could offer new ways to address the biggest causes of disease, including obesity, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
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