Author: Jeffrey

The U.S. Government’s Climate Warnings Are a Public Health Problem

The U.S. Government’s Climate Warnings Are a Public Health Problem

Op-Ed: How the U.S. came to protect the natural world — and exploit it at the same time

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In the U.S., people are concerned with their own health – but as they grow older they increasingly don’t have as much time to think about the health of their surroundings. That’s because most people live sedentary lives, which has become more sedentary as more people are on computers, cellphones and other such devices. These new technologies have made it impossible to walk or do things like gardening, cooking, cleaning, or even doing yoga and stretching.

So if people don’t think about their own health, it’s understandable if it’s not a priority on the global agenda. The most common complaint about climate change in the U.S. is that it threatens the health of people living with or near the impacts of global warming. And it’s in this context of health that we have to think about climate change’s impacts on the natural world.

What has been going on for the last thirty years or so is that countries and industries around the world have been working to address some of the health concerns related to climate change. And in order to get people to recognize the health risks of climate change, the World Health Organization, which has a strong reputation in this area (see this recent article in the New York Times), has been putting out lots of warnings about climate change’s health impacts.

The U.S. government has played a very active role in this process, not just through its health warnings but through its climate programs. And the U.S. government has gone out of its way to keep climate change off the U.S. health agenda. It does so, in part, by promoting the idea of the environment as a public health problem, which is how they argue against any sort of health warnings. But there is a big difference between a public health problem like obesity, which is a health problem that has to do with what people eat and how they exercise, and a health problem like global warming, which is a direct and immediate threat to people’s health.

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