PLENARY - Planetary Health; how is climate change endangering our health?
Our Planetary Health Plenary Session is themed: “Planetary Health; how is climate change endangering our health?”
Air pollution is killing 7 million a year and harming billions more.
Not only is it fuelling climate change and destroying planetary health, it is creating a public health “time bomb”. Until we stop poisoning the planet, we will continue to make humans ill.
Nine out of ten of the world’s children are breathing toxic air, the World Health Organisation revealed last October. The WHO study found that 600,000 children were dying annually from respiratory infection.
Urbanisation is exacerbating the problem. Unesco predicts that by 2030 5 billion people (61% of the world’s population) will live in cities. This migration is being increased by climate change, which is having a profound impact on human health.
From direct effects caused by floods, droughts, and heatwaves through to indirect effects such as bad harvests and poor water quality, climate change is a major contributor to heart and lung disease, malnutrition and mental illness.
Among the One Young World community, 76% believe this generation will leave the planet in a better state than it is currently. Our Ambassador projects tackle air pollution in Africa, through the use of smokeless briquettes for cooking, to maintaining clean and sustainable water supplies in rural Peru. Schemes have educated 1,674,953,868 on environmental sustainability and impacted 1,342,595 people in getting access to physical and mental health services.
Can young leaders find new ways to protect people from illness by first curing our stricken planet?