Climate change is not just happening in some far and distant place. It's happening now, right here in Arizona.
This project is led by the Arizona Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility with the support of a coalition of co-sponsoring community and national organizations as well as local leaders. The purpose is to build new and fortify existing cross-cultural, community, and governmental partnerships to educate and engage community action to address the anticipated public health impacts of climate change in the Southwest.
Area business have begun signing on to the Southern Arizona Green Chamber of Commerce (SAGCC) Climate Leadership Challenge, an initiative engaging area businesses, non-profit organizations, the public sector, and individuals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Extreme weather events in the Southwestern U.S. and adjacent Borderlands are on the rise and with them, higher incidences of health-related impacts such as heat stress, newly emerging infectious diseases, asthma and other respiratory illnesses. Moreover, as the “hottest, driest part of the United States,” our region is already experiencing longer and more intense heat waves and (the threat of wide scale power blackouts), a “dramatic spike” in forest fires, severe dust storms, and changes in the amount and timing of rainfall and seasonal snowmelt that threatens water resources and food security. While these events are alarming, communities in the Southwest are preparing for these risks and other impacts outlined in the new National Climate Assessment through planning and prevention strategies aimed at reducing our vulnerability to extreme weather and local climate impacts.