Earth Day is coming up later on this month, but before we get there World Health Day falls along the way on April 7th.
It would be nice to think that in our educated times, it shouldn't come as any real surprise to anyone that human health and the health of the planet are closely linked, although there are plenty of climate change deniers out there who might not agree. Just in case anyone was left in any real doubt at all though, the World Health Organization is making it very clear with the chosen theme for World Health Day this year.
'Our planet, our health'
The unavoidable reality is that we are living on a rapidly warming, polluted planet where a pandemic, despite being less in the news, continues to rage on, and unless we change things then our situation isn't going to get better anytime soon.
World Health Day aims to raise awareness and motivate people towards thinking about and taking action towards addressing these very simple questions:
- Are we able to reimagine a world where clean air, water and food are available to all?
- Where economies are focused on health and well-being?
- Where cities are liveable and people have control over their health and the health of the planet?
The need is clear, the WHO estimates that more than 13 million deaths around the world each year are due to avoidable environmental causes. This includes the climate crisis which is the single biggest health threat facing humanity.
We could ramble on a bit about all of the actions taking place globally, etc. but you can find all of that by taking a look at the official website from the WHO: World Health Day 2022, which includes a list of actions that you can take as a company or individual to start to make a change for the better. You can also search for local World Health Day events in your area.
Instead we are going to share just a few of the very many facts and statistics out there which show exactly why we say that however you choose to look at it, the climate crisis is also a health crisis.
- Air pollution kills 13 people every minute due to lung cancer, heart disease and strokes.
- 3.6 billion people lack safe toilets globally. Untreated human waste degrades ecosystems and human health.
- 829 000 people die from diarrhoeal disease every year caused by polluted water and poor sanitation.
- Rising temperatures and floods caused by climate change will place an additional 2 billion people at risk of dengue infection
Be in no doubt that the health of the planet affects the health of us, the people living on it, both today and for the generations to follow. Let' do what we can to make it better and there is no better time to start than April 7th.