Presentation on theme: "Climate Change and Public Health: The Role of CDC"— Presentation transcript:
1 Climate Change and Public Health: The Role of CDC February 17, 2008Michael A. McGeehin, Ph.D., M.S.P.H.Director, Environmental Hazards and Health Effects,National Center for Environmental Health, CDC
2 Agenda Is climate change real? Is climate change a health issue? Is there a public health role?What is the role of CDC?A few parting thoughts.
9 European heat wave, 2003 UK 2,091 Italy 3,134 France 14,802 Portugal TIME LINE (FRANCE)CONFIRMED MORTALITYUK2,091Italy3,134France14,802Portugal1,854Spain4,151Switzerland975Netherlands1,400-2,200Germany1,410TOTAL29,817-30,617Vandentorren et al. Mortality in 13 French cities during the August 2003 heat wave. Am J Public Health 2004; 94(9):Haines et al. Climate change and human health: Impacts, vulnerability and public health. Public Health 2006;120:
12 Climate change and severe weather events, 1972-2004 Hurricane intensity (Saffir-Simpson scale categories 1 to 5), global, , including number of storms by category (A) and proportion of storms in each category (B). Bold curve in (A) is the maximum global hurricane wind speed (in m/sec). Dashed lines show the 1970–2004 average numbers in each category. Source: Webster et al., Science 2005;309:
13 Increases in temperature or ultraviolet radiation (UVR) in the lower atmosphere enhance the chemical reactions that produce ozone.Ozone is a highly reactive gas which can oxidize molecules directly, and create high-energy free radicals that damage cell membranes.Optional SlideREFERENCE: Climate Change and Human Health, Chapter 3.
14 Ozone Season in Atlanta UnhealthfulSource: M. Chang, Ph.D., Georgia Tech
16 Ragweed Genus Ambrosia ↑ CO2 and temperature → ↑ pollen counts, longer growing seasonSource: Ziska et al., J Allerg Clin Immunol 2003;111:290-95;Graphic: Wall Street Journal, 3 May 2007.
17 Poison Ivy Toxicodendron radicans ↑ CO2 leads to ↑ photosynthesis↑ water use efficiency↑ growth↑ biomassMore allergenic urushiolGreater CO2 stimulation than most other woody speciesSource: Mohan et al. PNAS 2006;103:
24 Public Health Action on Climate Change Study and predict links between climate change and healthTrack diseases and trends related to climate changeInvestigate infectious water-, food-, and vector-borne disease outbreaksPublic health workforce prepared to respondCommunicate effectively on climate changeHeat wave and severe storm response plans; focus on the most vulnerablePartnerships with private sector, civic groups, NGOs, faith community, etc.
25 The role of CDC Surveillance and data collection Outbreak investigationsTechnical assistanceForecasting and modelingPreparedness planningResearchEducationTraining and capacity-building
26 A few parting thoughts: Four Cs ConceptualizingCommunicatingComplexityCo-benefits
27 “Mitigation and Adaptation” or“Preparedness and Prevention”
28 Care for future generations Care for the individual patientCare for the communityCare for future generationsTHE CLINICAL APPROACHTHE PUBLIC HEALTH APPROACHTHE LEGACY APPROACH
40 “Think of the verbs associated with environmentalism and conservation: ‘stop,’ ‘restrict,’ ‘reverse,’ prevent,’ ‘regulate,’ and ‘constrain.’ All of them direct our thinking to stopping the bad, not creating the good.”The need for positive, aspirational messages.
43 The need for bold, cross-cutting thinking. “The challenge of climate change is so massive, so global, and so complex that it can only be overcome if we look beyond the issue categories of the past and embrace a grand new vision for the future.”The need for bold, cross-cutting thinking.
53 Climate Change Synergies Heat wave plans including “buddy systems”↑ social capital↓ Vehicular travel↓ car crashes; clean air; ↑ physical activity↑ Fuel efficiency↓ air pollutionLocally grown foodFresh food; ↓ pesticide exposure; local businessEnergy-efficient buildings↓ operating costsAlternative energy sourcesBusiness opportunities
54 Co-benefits: Trees Carbon sequestration Cooler temperatures Reduced energy demandClean waterClean airProtection from sunlightVenues for physical activityNoise reductionMental healthSpiritual fulfillment