The Impact of Climate Change on Health


Sarah Peddie

The Australian Medical Association (AMA) warns that climate change could have severe damaging effects on vulnerable people in Australia. 

During a speech on Tuesday 3 September, AMA President Dr Tony Bartone said climate change could increase the spread of infectious diseases and a higher mortality due to heat stress. 

It is estimated that roughly over a $600 loss in productivity for every employed Australian due to heat stress. This also has significant links between exposure to high temperatures and deaths rates in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. 

The impact from climate change would see more injuries and deaths from extreme weather conditions, a decline in agricultural output and high rates of mental ill-health. 

He continued: “These effects are already being observed internationally and in Australia. There is no doubt that climate change is a health emergency.”

Doctors are calling on the Government to adopt several measures to reduce the impact of climate change on the country. This includes mitigation targets on carbon and policies to move from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

The AMA also wants the Government to promote the health benefits of making people aware of climate change.

Health experts have warned the number of extreme weather events, like the Victorian asthma thunderstorms back in 2016, could increase due to climate change.

Doctors in the USA and the UK have made similar declarations this year.

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