Guidebooks designed to help agencies deal with climate change

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From Green Right Now Reports

Climate change isn’t just about coping with warmer temperatures or rising sea levels. Experts also anticipate real health issues such as heat illness, asthma, food and water-borne diseases, respiratory ailments, and even mental illness.

Photo: University of Oregon Climate Leadership Initiative

How will public health agencies cope with all that? The University of Oregon Climate Leadership Initiative, in partnership with the Oregon Coalition of Local Health Officials and public health organizations around the state, have issued two new guidebooks aimed at helping health-related agencies and organizations cope with climate change.

“Ready for Change: Preparing Public Health Agencies for the Impacts of Climate Change” offers steps and strategies to help plan for new issues likely to emerge from climate change. “Leading by Example: Emissions Reductions in Public Health Agencies” lays out strategies for assessing and reducing internally generated carbon emissions.

The climate preparedness guidebook covers a variety of topics including extreme heat, disease, food, air quality and mental health. The mitigation guidebook provides simple, inexpensive changes that agencies can make to save energy and costs.

“Public health departments today are typically understaffed and lack needed resources,” said Bob Doppelt, director of CLI and project manager. “The intent of these guidebooks is to outline actions that can be taken at any level of capacity and be integrated into existing programs.

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