Protecting the health of vulnerable people from the humanitarian consequences of climate change and climate related disasters

  • 01/05/2009
  • WHO

The health and humanitarian dimensions of climate change are among the ultimate justifications for taking action on climate change and these are closely interlinked. Humanitarian assistance provides a strong health imperative to save lives and alleviate the suffering of crisis affected populations. Climate change mitigation and adaptation, in particular, are important for the protection of health of vulnerable populations from both sudden and slow onset climate-related emergencies. The aim of the paper is twofold: first, it documents the range of risks that climate change poses to human health associated with humanitarian emergencies, and secondly, it proposes policy directions to manage the health humanitarian impact of climate change for consideration by the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UNFCCC, the health sector and by the humanitarian community.

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