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Climate change impairs children’s health worldwide


Matheus Cruz (AFN)


The climate changes experienced by the entire planet are already causing health problems on children and can have lifelong consequences that will affect an entire generation, according to the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change. The study, that gathers researches of 35 global institutions, including Fiocruz, was launched in Brazil on 11/18, during an event at the University of São Paulo.

The report is an annual analysis that follows 41 key indicators to assess the impact of climate change on public health. With this purpose, the document tackles four essential areas: vulnerability to diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, coal, air pollution and emissions at health sectors.

The studies show extensive health problems caused by climate change and lifelong consequences for children born today. As temperatures rise, babies become more vulnerable to malnutrition related maladies and to the higher price of food. In addition, children are those who suffer the most with an increased rate of infectious diseases - a certain type of mosquito has 11% more ability to transmit dengue fever in Brazil, as a result of climate change.

Exposure to forest fires and the impact of air pollution are some of the points also mentioned in the document. During their teen years, these children will suffer with dangerous levels of atmospheric pollution outdoors, which contributed for 24,000 premature deaths in 2016 alone. Extreme climatic events will also intensify during the adult years of all those born today; in Brazil, since 2001, 1.6 million people have been exposed to forest fires.
Lancet Countdown

The 2019 The Lancet Countdown report on health and climate change shows the most recent date regarding 41 indicators in 5 sectors: impact, exposure and vulnerability to climate change; planning of adaptation of resilience for health; mitigation actions and co-benefits for health; economy and finance; public and political engagement. For further information on the Lancet Countdown, click here.

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