Climate change and human health: what do we know?

Anthony J McMichael and Rosalie E Woodruff
Med J Aust 2002; 177 (11): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2002.tb04976.x
Published online: 9 December 2002

We can no longer ignore human-induced climate changes that are likely to affect our health

There is wide agreement among climatologists internationally that human-induced climate change is now under way.1 Global climate change is one of various large-scale, unprecedented environmental perturbations occurring in today's world. These environmental changes reflect the rapid increase in human domination of the biosphere as human numbers increase and as economic activities intensify.2,3 This process has, apparently, now passed certain critical points. Indeed, one recent environmental analysis showed that humankind has been operating in ecological deficit since the 1970s: we now consume and deplete Earth's natural environmental capital faster than it is being replenished and restored.4

  • National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT.


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