Posted by: r.m. | March 22, 2010

Climate Change and Public Health (biol 207)

From the November 2009 issue of The Lancet

Climate change already affects human health, and, if no action is taken, problems such as malnutrition, deaths and injury due to extreme weather conditions, and change in geographical distribution of disease vectors will worsen. This Series is the result of an international collaboration of scientists supported by a consortium of funding bodies coordinated by the Wellcome Trust, UK. The Comments and Articles make a strong case for linking climate and health goals, and provide a quantitative underpinning for this important health message.

The Ecology Class at FHS will be discussing climate change and public health.  If the Ecology class at the main campus (BIOL 207) is also interested in spending more time discussing climate change and public health, the syllabus can be accommodated accordingly. You tell me.



  1. although we have said over and over again that the rate at which climate change is affecting us exceeds that of our adaptation, i do beleive that we are somhow adapting…if not all of us than a few of us are and that is more than enough to ensure the continuity of our species…nonetheless, the problems that are being caused by the climate change have been here long before the climate change even started so it does not implicate that the climate change is the source of our health issues. On the other hand we can say that the climate change is accelerating and helping the factors that contribute in making us ill but then again it is not the source. it works like an enzyme: those who have the tendency to develop cancer for exemple will develop cancer with or without the climate change eventually. Climate change just brings the innevitable a little bit faster….so why suffer later, suffer now….

  2. i think we should discuss the relation between public health and climate change since it is the most important impact of climate change on us as humans. And if we’re not interested in what might happen directly to us, i don’t know what will.

  3. i agree with nicole about talking about the issue in class. what should be a major concern to us (as in the other undeveloped countries) is not only the spread of new diseases but also the extreme weather events that might occur because our infrastructure is not adapted to face such challenges.
    when people hear about damage caused to animals by climate change the main answer is “why should i care?”(although it is nonsense because life is based on a continuous chain). But it comes to damage directly caused to humans, you can not pretend you do not care!

  4. well, why not! i think it will be great if we could discuss this subject in class. In fact, the more direct effect that climate change have on us is on our health. But what ghattas is saying, although reflecting the point of view of many people, cannot just be accepted. If we all said our species is evolutionary protected and we are going to die anyway, so what’s is the big deal? Then all the purposes and the meaning that we give to our life will be meaningless. we will be just like any other animal that accept its destiny as if there is nothing to do. Our purpose in life is not just to spend time, neither spending more time, it is knowing what to do in this life improving the quality of human life which is one of the most important goals of medicine by treating people not diseases!

  5. It is nice to discuss such issues in class which deal with our daily life and the problem we, as human beings and not just ecology students, are facing and should solve it. I know that solving it is a BIG DEAL and we can’t do it by ourselves but we can at leat do our part of the job.
    Ghattas, I do agree with Mireille on that since who would like to suffer either now or later?? we should solve the problem and not wait its consequences. And I think that climate change is considered part of the source because it affects all the aspects of life and by that health. Check this link:

  6. Well I find that discussing such an issue in class will be more efficient because the way of our study will become less boring and more interesting. I do agree with the point of view of mireille because since as we are human beings, so we are thinking beings, therefore, it is ironical to say that there are no solutions for the climate change. Searching for solutions is what we are interested in.

  7. well i agree with all of you this issue has to be discussed more in class honestly all what i hear about global warming are just general ideas and no facts… by the way there’s a documentary called Home i have watched lately it talks about global warming it’s a french photographer Yann Bertrand who took landscape amazing pictures of the eart showing the impacts of global warming on Earth I can get it and we’ll watch it in class it will be interesting. What do you think Dr.Rania?

  8. i am completely with the idea of discussing such an issue in least we will be understanding what we are talking about..

  9. Good idea Tamara. If Dr. Rania and our colleagues agreed, it will be a great if we could watch the documentary in class, then discuss it. Also, this will be a great way to make the class more interesting!!!

  10. after doing our homework, concerning the impact of climate change, i realized that it was a very broad topic that could deal with every organism. climate change can have so many consequences, from terrestrial to aquatic life, affecting each living creature from bacteria to animals to plants to oceans to winds, mainly everything. so it would be nice if we knew some general impacts of this climate change. and as Mireille suggested a documentary would be great, and there is a documentary that won some prices that i heard about but can’t remember the name.

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