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9/4/2019 9:27:11 AM

Australia Medical Association declares climate change a health emergency

Australia’s top medical body has declared climate change a health emergency.

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The Australia Medical Association has warned climate change could have severe health consequences for vulnerable people all over world.

“These effects are already being observed international and in Australia. There is no doubt that climate change is a health emergency,’’ association president Tony Bartone said on Tuesday.

“The association accepts the scientific evidence on climate change and its impact on human health and human wellbeing,’’

Dr Bartone said climate change could increase the spread of infectious diseases and see higher mortality from heat stress.

He said it would also see more injuries and deaths from severe weather events, declines in agricultural output leading to food insecurity, and higher rates of mental ill-health.

It estimates heat stress carries a $616 loss in productivity for every employed Australian, with significant links between exposure to high temperatures and death rates in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

Doctors are calling on the federal government to adopt several measures, including mitigation targets on carbon, and policies that promote the shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

The association also wants Australian government to promote the health benefits of addressing climate change, and establish a body to reduce carbon emissions in the healthcare sector.

Doctor’s group in America and the UK made similar declarations earlier this year. 

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