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The Climate Crisis Is Also a Health Crisis

The interplay between climate change and the spread of deadly pathogens could herald an era of global devastation and disruption. To avert another COVID-style catastrophe, we must prepare our health systems for future crises, address outbreak risks, and ensure equitable access to vaccines and treatments.

GENEVA – The latest Lancet Countdown report, which monitors the health consequences of climate change, highlights the need to prepare for future calamities. Even as COVID-19 continues to spread, a recent study suggests that the likelihood of another pandemic increases by 2% each year. In the coming decades, the interplay between the climate crisis and public health could create a perfect storm of global devastation and disruption.