Friday, September 8, 2017

How Climate Change Affects Children:



Many common daily activities such as driving a car, using electricity, heating and cooling buildings requires burning of fossil fuels. These activities have increased levels of greenhouse gases in the air which is changing the planet’s climate. Climate change is affecting many things, including children’s health and safety.  
Rising Temperatures: Leads to more heat waves, children can be affected by increased temperatures, especially infants and athletes.

Extreme weather:  Leads to a rise in bad storms, floods and stronger wildfires.  This can lead to dirty water, loss of homes and communities, and more air pollution.  This puts children’s safety and health at risk as well as their mental wellbeing.
Air Quality: A rise in pollution and allergens can increase allergy related illnesses, and cause breathing problems, especially in children with asthma.
Mosquitos and Ticks: Changes in rain, length of the warm season, and differences in temperature can cause a change in mosquito and tick behavior, this leads to an increase in diseases such as Lyme disease, Zika Virus, Malaria, and West Nile Virus.

Water and foodborne illnesses:  Dirty water and spoiled food can cause people to become sick. These types of diseases, like diarrhea, are known to increase when outdoor temperature rises or immediately following storms or floods. Children are especially at risk for these illnesses due to their developing immune systems.
Access to food: In some parts of the world, climate change has already led to less food and less healthy food.

The good news is that each of us can take steps to lower the human impact on climate change and protect children’s health:

      1. Know your carbon footprint: Your carbon footprint is a measure of the greenhouse gases that you produce through activities that burn fossil fuels.  Using less energy and reducing waste can reduce your carbon footprint. You can calculate your carbon footprint and learn how to take action to reduce it here: https://www3.epa.gov/carbon-footprint-calculator/

      2. Cut down use of fossil fuels such as gas, oil, and coal and increase use of renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power.

     3.  Walk, or bike whenever possible.


To learn more visit:

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2014-05/documents/ochp_climate_brochure.pdf

Let’s work together to leave the world a better, healthier, safer place- and give our children a better, healthier, safer future.

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