By Ioanna Kantartzi

It is known that the climate and weather conditions are important determinants of human health. This means that climate change is occurring globally, changing the factual situation regarding health and wellbeing of people everywhere.

Climate change affects the human body in both direct and indirect ways. Direct exposure is happening through changing weather conditions, such as temperature, rainfall, rising sea levels and more frequent extreme weather events. The indirect exposure is due to lower quality of water, air and food, as well as to changes in the ecosystem, agriculture, industry, communities and the economy. Consequently, climate change increases worldwide existing diseases, like happening with Malaria in Mexico, but it also creates new ones.

The impact of climate change on health can be summed up into roughly three categories. Firstly effects caused by extreme weather events (e.g. deaths from heat waves). Secondly, the impact caused as a result of environmental changes and ecological disturbances due to climate change (e.g. increasing threat of diseases transferred mosquitos or rodents). Finally, the different effects on people through environmental degradation and economic problems due to the climate change (e.g. nutritional or psychological problems).

Climate change and rampant issue affect any human’s life. Effects like increased mortality due to global warming, but also simultaneously reduced mortality in the less warm countries for the same reason. Moreover, greater frequency of epidemics of communicable diseases due to floods and extreme weather events. Finally, appreciable effects on human health due to the population displacement. 

Do not let ignorance overwhelm you. The institutions should give more importance to transparency and report on the decisions on environmental issues. Moreover, citizens should be involved more systematically in the elaboration and implementation of policies. Furthermore we must clarify the role of each factor in the decision process. In addition, decisions should be taken at the right level and the right time to produce the required results. Finally the policies implemented by the UN are highly diversified and requires continuous effort to ensure consistency.

Our society must be aware as a whole, as the environment is the place in which we live, reproduce, nourish. It is necessary to protect our lives, our health, and of course the future of our children.