The Academy has been involved in two statements about the health co-benefits of policies to tackle climate changeLaunched
Climate change and health
In November 2009 the Academy released a statement on climate change to coincide with the publication in the Lancet of a series of studies on the impact of strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions on public health.
The statement highlighted the major threat to the health of populations across the globe presented by climate change. It outlined the increasing evidence that mitigation strategies can be developed that, in addition to reducing GHG emissions and associated climate change, have sizeable and near-term benefits to health in both high- and low-income countries. It called on world leaders to realise these health co-benefits as they negotiate strategies to combat climate change.
Ahead of the 2015 Conference of Parties (COP) in Paris, the Academy joint 23 of the UK's most influential academic institutions to call on national governments to take action against climate change. A joint statement stressed that climate change poses a major threat to the health of the population across the world, and called for immediate action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prevent the rise in temperatures they bring.
It highlighted that actions should stem from scientific evidence - if we want to limit global warming in this century to 2°C (relative to the pre-industrial period), we must transition, by the second half of the century, to a world in which net carbon dioxide emissions equal zero. This may seem a long way, but the transition would need to happen within 35 to 40 years.
The statement is available to download on the right and a news article summarised the key messages. Organisations signing the statement alongside the Academy included the British Academy, Royal Meteorological Society, Royal Society, Royal Society of Biology, Royal Society of Chemistry, Royal Society of Edinburgh and the Wellcome Trust.