More than 200 medical journals around the world have published an editorial urging world leaders to take urgent action to combat climate change: limit global temperature rises, stop the destruction of nature, and protect human health. This is stated in the original article.
The article was published ahead of the UN General Assembly next week. And also before the climate conference (COP26) in Glasgow in November. Doctors, medical professionals and scientists warn that while the latest targets for reducing emissions and conserving biodiversity are positive, they are clearly not enough. In addition, all of these goals are not yet aligned with robust short and long-term plans.
For decades, healthcare professionals and industry publications have warned of the serious and growing impact of climate change on human health and the environment.
“The health and survival impacts of extreme temperatures, devastating weather events, and widespread degradation of major ecosystems are just a few of the impacts we are seeing to a greater extent due to climate change,” the article says.
These impacts most strongly affect vulnerable populations, including children and the elderly, ethnic minorities, poorer communities, and people with underlying medical conditions.
In the article, the medical community calls on governments to intervene in climate change to transform societies and economies, for example by supporting the modernization of transport systems, cities, food production and distribution, markets for financial investment, and health systems. Significant investment will be required, according to the authors of the article, but it will bring huge positive effects on health and the economy, including high-quality jobs, reduced air pollution, increased physical activity, and improved living conditions and diets.
“As health professionals, we must do everything we can to facilitate the transition to a sustainable, more equitable, sustainable, and healthy world,” the authors write. “As editors of medical journals, we urge governments and other leaders to act to make 2021 the moment when the whole world will finally change course.”
Dr. Fiona Godley, Editor-in-Chief of BMJ and one of the editorial co-authors, said: “Health care workers are at the forefront of the fight against COVID-19. Today, they have teamed up to warn that a rise in temperature on Earth by even 1.5º C will lead to further destruction of nature and a much more deadly crisis. Richer countries must act faster and do more to support those already suffering from higher temperatures.”
Note that never before have so many magazines come together to make the same statement reflecting the severity of the climate change emergency facing the world.