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Heat Advisory: Protecting Health on a Warming Planet
by Dr. Alan Lockwood

Drawing on peer-reviewed scientific and medical research, Dr. Lockwood meticulously details the symptoms of climate change and their medical side effects.

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New Global Warming Factsheets

Heat's Deadly Effects (PDF)
Heat-related illnesses are serious and can lead to death.  In fact, extreme heat events are already a significant public health problem in the U.S.

Vector-Borne and Water-Borne Diseases (PDF)
Learn how changes in temperature and precipitation affect the development, reproduction, behavior and geographic range of insects that carry dangerous infectious diseases.  Climate change and its effects such as intense storms and flooding are also likely to worsen the spread of water-borne diseases. 

Shrinking the Food Supply (PDF)
Global warming will damage crops, increase the risks of secondary impacts such as fires, insect pests and pathogens, and endanger in food security, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia.  The U.S. won’t be exempt from the impacts, either.

Vulnerable Populations, Environmental Justice (PDF)
Global warming threatens to harm our health and well-being – but it won’t affect all of us equally.  Some groups of people are more likely to be harmed than others.  The most vulnerable tend to be the youngest and the oldest among us, the poor, and those who are already sick.  The disproportionate and discriminatory impacts that climate change will have on vulnerable populations make climate change one of the most significant environmental justice issues of our time.

Mental Health Implications of Global Warming (PDF)
While the physical threats from global warming are more widely known, a larger number of people are likely to be vulnerable to climate change’s mental health implications.  Among the anticipated impacts:  increased alcohol abuse, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, grief, and family violence. 

Page Updated October 8, 2013

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Resources

  • Saving Energy, Saving Lives: The Health Impacts of Avoiding Power Plant Pollution with Energy Efficiency

    PSR and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE)'s new report examines the public health benefits and medical cost savings of cutting annual electric consumption by 15 percent. Read more »

  • Natural Gas Health Impacts Symposium

    PSR is proud to have participated in "Natural Gas Infrastructure and Public Health," a high-powered conference in Boston that brought together university researchers, public health departments and concerned citizens. Watch Environment & Health Director Barbara Gottlieb's overview presentation here, timestamp 11:10 - 46:05. Read more »

  • Fracking Compendium 5 Water Excerpt

    Given the timely and important consideration of the issue by state officials in Florida, Physicians for Social Responsibility, along with Concerned Health Professionals of New York, has released excerpts from the upcoming Fifth Edition of the Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking. Released in Miami in advance of the full report, this new document contains an up-to-date analysis and compilation of the science on water contamination risks from drilling, fracking, and associated activities. Read more »

In the Spotlight

  • March 3, 2018
    WPSR Annual Dinner and Fundraiser
    Join Washington PSR for a reception, a delicious meal, keynote address by David Korten, presentation of the 2018 Paul Beeson and Malcolm Peterson awards, and a live auction.