Position paperClimate change and rising diseases: coping with new and future health challenges 30 November 2023
The climate crisis is exacerbating inequalities in access to basic social services, including healthcare, and highlighting the lack of investment in the sector. From 2009-2019, only 0.2% of total bilateral and multilateral funding for climate change adaptation supports projects with a health specific objective. If nothing is done, future pandemics, most likely of zoonotic origin, are likely to be even more devastating than the Covid-19 crisis.
“One of the major barriers that low- and middle-income countries report is a lack of finance for climate and health investments.”Marco SchäferhoffIn our blog series "Health and Climate: concrete opportunities for more synergetic work?"
The organisation of a first official Health Day at COP 28 and the adoption of a declaration on the subject represent a crucial step in taking into account the impacts of climate change on health.
In order to cope with the health and environmental crisis simultaneously, we are asking global decision-makers to commit to:
- Tackling biodiversity loss and promote a “One Health” approach, i.e. an interdisciplinary vision that links human, animal and environmental health.
- Investing in research and development to address the health consequences of climate change.
- Strengthening surveillance and prevention, in particular to detect the risk of transmission of pathogens from animals to humans and to raise awareness among populations at risk.
- Increasing funding for health and climate, in particular the ones offered by Multilateral Development Banks and dedicated climate funds.
- Strengthening healthcare systems worldwide, in particular through official development assistance.
- Integrating health as a core topic of all international climate discussions.