Though the polar bear on an iceberg remains the iconic image of global warming, it's clear that the impacts from climate change on the human population are present and severe. Unlike polar bears, however, all human populations are not impacted equally. Low income populations are at a disadvantage when it comes to resources to prepare and recover from disasters, location, and the ability to protect themselves. Unfairly, impoverished communities often face higher risks and greater worries.
Linda Rudolph, director of the Climate Change and Public Health Project at the nonprofit Public Health Institute, speaks to this topic in the Desert Sun article below. "If you live in poor-quality housing where you don't have decent screens on windows, you're more susceptible to being bitten by mosquitoes," Rudolph said. "If you're poor and already having a hard time buying enough food at the end of every month, then when food prices go up, you're at greater risk of food insecurity, and at greater chronic disease risk."
Climate for Health leaders must mobilize each other to ensure that the most vulnerable among us are protected.
By Sammy Roth I April 14, 2016
Climate change isn't just an environmental issue. At least not in the traditional sense.
Global warming bears all the hallmarks of environmental catastrophe: dwindling rivers, raging wildfires, dying animals and more. But those consequences aren't even half the story. Experts say climate change could devastate human health, the economy and national security, making the world a more dangerous place to live and widening the gap between the rich and the poor.
In many places, people are already feeling those impacts.
Climate-linked heat waves, disease outbreaks and food shortages have already killed an untold number of people. Droughts, hurricanes and wildfires made more likely by climate change have exacted a huge economic toll, as have rising sea levels. A growing body of research indicates that a severe drought helped kindle the Syrian Civil War — just one example of why the Pentagon considers climate change a national security "threat multiplier."
"From almost any perspective that you choose to look at this from, it makes sense to stop the indiscriminate burning of fossil fuels, to stop our heavy reliance on energy sources from volatile, dangerous parts of the world, to turn toward energy strategies that will be safer, healthier, more sustainable and create more jobs and opportunities," said Rep. Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael.
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