Advice on climate change and health

Today, the European Commission’s independent Group of Chief Scientific Advisors published their opinion Adaptation to climate change-related health effects which contains advice and recommendations on how the EU can help to make our societies, and in particular the health sector, better prepared and more resilient with respect to impacts from climate change on health.

The opinion recommends to integrate human health into all climate-change adaptation policies, support resilience of the health sector and to design policies to support the most vulnerable social groups and geographical areas.

Detailed recommendations:

  • Integrate human health into all climate-change adaptation policies: The EU provides strategic direction and co-ordination at the global, national and regional level to integrate human health into all climate change adaptation policies. The opinion recommends policy learning across all policy sectors and governance levels, evidence-based assessment of adaptation actions, and closing evidence gaps.
  • Support the resilience of the health sector: The EU should support the capacity and preparedness of the health sector for dealing with climate change, as part of broader disaster and emergency risk strategies, including surveillance, monitoring and assessment.
  • Design policies to support the most vulnerable social groups and geographical areas: Particular focus should be placed on reinforcing adaptation actions in geographical areas that are particularly vulnerable to health-relevant hazards resulting from climate change, such as heat waves, vector-borne infectious diseases, floods and droughts.
  • The opinion informs several initiatives of the Green Deal, including the forthcoming proposal for a Climate Observatory and the EU Adaptation Strategy planned for 2021.

SAPEA connected the Advisors with a range of expertise during the drafting of the opinion.

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