Highlights

  • Illnesses such as malaria, dengue and cholera will become a severe threat
  • Potential for viral outbreaks is increasing most rapidly in developed countries
  • The study warned against a fossil fuel-driven economic recovery

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A Lancet study has revealed that climate change is creating ideal conditions for microbial disease transmission, and unfortunately, the world’s healthcare systems aren’t ready for it.

As the world is recovering from the plunging aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, a new study has now revealed that climate change is creating ideal conditions for microbial disease transmission, and unfortunately, the world’s healthcare systems aren’t ready for it.

The Lancet, a weekly peer-reviewed general medical journal, has highlighted that illnesses such as malaria, dengue and cholera will become a severe threat unless leaders commit to more ambitious climate plans. The medical journal’s sixth annual report, named The Lancet Countdown, tracks 44 indicators of health impacts that are directly linked to climate change and highlight worsening social inequalities.

Also watch: Climate Change Crisis: It's only going to get hotter!

Drawing on research from 38 academic institutions and United Nations agencies, the study found that the potential for viral outbreaks is increasing most rapidly in developed countries. The danger of malaria infections is rising in cooler areas, while coasts around northern Europe and the U.S. are becoming more prone to bacteria which produce gastroenteritis and sepsis.

On the other hand, almost 600 million people are living less than 5 meters above sea level, which puts them at risk of increased flooding and intense storms. The study adds that due to this, many could be forced to permanently leave their homes. The study also warned against a fossil fuel-driven economic recovery that funds oil, gas and coal production.

Maria Romanello, lead author and research director of the report, said that these are grim warnings that for every day that we delay our response to climate change, the situation gets more critical. She also emphasised that “no one is safe from the effects of climate change.”

Also watch: Save the Planet; Save humanity: Tackling the climate change crisis

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