WASHINGTON, D.C. | January 26, 2021
Today, 26 national health and medical organizations delivered a Declaration on Climate Change and Health to President Joe Biden and congressional leadership underscoring climate change as a health emergency and calling for immediate action to protect the public’s health from the current and future impacts of climate change. This declaration comes on the heels of several executive actions released by the Biden administration on climate and in advance of another package of anticipated executive actions further prioritizing climate change.
The signing organizations include the American Lung Association, Allergy & Asthma Network, Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association of Community Psychiatrists, American College of Physicians, American College of Preventive Medicine, American Public Health Association, Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health, Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, Children’s Environmental Health Network, Climate for Health, Columbia Climate & Health Program, Global Climate and Health Alliance, Health Care Without Harm, Medical Society Consortium on Climate & Health, Medical Students for a Sustainable Future, National Association of County and City Health Officials, National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, National Environmental Health Association, National League for Nursing, National Medical Association, National WIC Association, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Public Health Institute, and Society for Public Health Education.
These leading public health, environmental health, patient advocacy, healthcare, nursing and medical organizations urge Congress and the Administration to take action to protect health from climate change and reduce air pollution at the same time. These groups call for policies that:
- Adopt science-based targets to prevent climate warming above 1.5 degrees Celsius;
- Maximize benefits to health by reducing carbon and methane pollution while also reducing other dangerous emissions from polluting sources;
- Promote health equity by ensuring that pollution is cleaned up in all communities, prioritizing the elimination of polluting sources in communities that have historically borne a disproportionate burden from air, water and soil pollution; and
- Leave the Clean Air Act fully in place. Any policy to address climate change must not weaken or delay the Clean Air Act or the authority that it gives the Environmental Protection Agency to reduce carbon emissions.
Read the full text of the Declaration on Climate Change and Health, which includes additional considerations for policy makers and more detailed policy recommendations. For more information on the declaration or to speak with a lung health or policy expert, contact Allison MacMunn at 312-801-7628 or [email protected]
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.
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