Health professionals have always been on the front lines of caring for their patients and advocating for solutions to America’s most pressing public health concerns. Today, as climate change delivers record-breaking storms, droughts, and increased pollution, health leaders are stepping forward to lead.
If we can inspire and empower health professionals to lead on climate, we can reach every city and county in the nation with a new climate message, and new reasons to support solutions. We know that Americans are not very motivated when we speak about climate change using environmental jargon. And, it simply isn’t authentic or inspiring for health professionals to talk about GHGs or Market Based Mechanisms. But it IS both authentic and motivating for them to talk about air pollution, asthma, and the health benefits of solutions.
The health and wellbeing of our children, families and future generations is at stake. We can make a difference.
These talking points provide a starting point. Tailor and use them in your conversations and writing to build support for climate solutions.
1. I became a health professional because I care about health - the health of
everyone in our community. I want to heal people, but it’s also important to prevent
the causes of illness and injury.
2. Each breath we take should be a healthy one, and caring for ourselves means
caring for our climate. We can prevent further climate change and protect our health
– and that of future generations – at the same time.
3. Fossil fuels damage our climate and are dangerously unhealthy. We know these
dirty fuels pollute our air and water. And, the toxic pollution we’re adding to the
atmosphere is steadily building up to dangerous levels.
4. Some people are more vulnerable to the health impacts of climate change,
including children, the elderly, the sick, low-income, and some communities of
color. Our efforts to stop pollution help all of these groups live longer, healthier lives.
5. If we stop pollution from fossil fuels, we can slow climate change and improve
our health, now and for future generations. We reduce diseases and illness brought
on by pollution - and - we slow the rising temperatures that are changing weather
patterns and causing more intense storms and severe weather conditions, all of which
threaten our health.
6. It is up to us, as respected community leaders, to lead on climate and leave a
legacy of health. We can speak with authority on the climate and health connection,
and convey the myriad of health benefits of stopping climate pollution.
7. Of all the things we’d love to leave our children and future generations, a
healthy place for them to raise children of their own may be the most important.
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