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Lancet journal published a report on “Health and Climate Change, 2019

Lancet journal published a report on “Health and Climate Change, 2019

The Lancet journal published a report on “Health and Climate Change, 2019" on November 13, 2019. The Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change is a comprehensive yearly analysis that tracks the progress across 41 indicators. The project is a collaboration of 120 experts from premier institutions all over the world, including the WHO and the World Bank.

Key Points:

  • Climate change is already damaging the health of the World’s children and is set to shape the well-being of an entire generation unless the world meets the target to limit the warming to well below 2˚C. 
  • As the temperatures rise, the infants will have to bear the greatest burden of malnutrition and rising food prices — average yield potential of maize and rice has declined almost 2% in India since the 1960s, with malnutrition already responsible for two-thirds of under-5 deaths. 
  • Also, children will suffer most from the rise in infectious diseases — with climatic suitability for the Vibrio bacteria that cause cholera is rising 3 per cent a year in India since the early 1980s.
  • With its huge population and high rates of healthcare inequality, malnutrition and poverty, India and few countries are likely to suffer from the health effects of climate change.
  • Diarrhoeal infections which is a major cause of child mortality, will spread into new areas similar to the one that happened in 2015 that killed thousands of people in India, could soon become the norm.

Report Highlights:

  • Climate Change threats to aquaculture and fisheries according to the report are: Rise in Sea-level and Sea surface temperature, ocean acidification, intense and frequent extreme weather events.

WBGT (Wet Bulb Globe Temperature measurement): 

  • It is the measure of heat stress that takes into account temperature, humidity, cloud cover, sun angle and wind speed.
  • This report warned us that according to WBGT, 22 billion additional hours of work will be lost due to extreme heat. The rise in temperature will lead to productivity loss at 0.8 to 5%.

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