• Public Health Resources

Public Health Laws and Policies

This tab includes strategies for how to avoid or reduce climate change impacts in the public health sector. It also includes any laws, legislation, regulations, agency guidance, and executive orders relevant to public health. 

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20 results are shown below.

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Climate Change, Health and Equity: Opportunities for Action

March 2015

This report explores the ways in which climate change, health, and equity are connected, and identifies many opportunities and recommendations for climate adaptation in the public health sector. From the Public Health Institute (PHI), the report analyzes the relationships between the social determinants of health, health inequities, and climate impacts - with an eye on how vulnerable populations overall are facing greater exposure. A number of examples are given of successful projects in which communities and public health organizations are taking action on climate change, health solutions, and social equity.

Related Organizations: Public Health Institute

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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A Human Health Perspective on Climate Change

April 22, 2010

This report identifies major research needs to better address the human health impacts of climate change.  Prepared by the Interagency Working Group on Climate Change and Health, and with contribution by numerous federal agencies, the goal is to better inform federal agencies with a human health or related research mission in their research priorities.

Related Organizations: The Interagency Working Group on Climate Change and Health (IWGCCH), National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), Environmental Health Perspectives

Authors or Affiliated Users: Christopher J. Portier, Kimberly Thigpen Tart

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Wisconsin Climate and Health Toolkits

2019

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services created the Climate and Health Toolkits to offer guidance on health-related climate change preparedness and response to local governments, health departments, and the public. Nine toolkits focused on Extreme Heat, Flood, Winter Weather, Wildfire, Chemical Release, Harmful Algal Blooms, Drought, Thunderstorms and Tornadoes, and Vectorborne Disease are provided, each accompanied by a one-page fact sheet for general audiences. Each toolkit offers background information, climate trends, and health impacts associated with the topic, as well as preparedness strategies and guidance, best practice tips, communication tools for outreach, and additional resources.

Related Organizations: Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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An Action Plan for Public Health: Initial Recommendations for Involving Public Health in Climate Change Policy

April 1, 2010

Public Health Law and Policy, a non-profit organization focused on building healthy communities in the U. S. , gathered a diverse group of more than 150 participants for a multi-disciplinary exchange of ideas and strategies with the goal of better engaging public health networks and agencies in climate change work. This Action Plan presents a synthesis of those recommendations and priorities. Although developed for the state of California's public health system, the recommendations are largely applicable to any state.

Related Organizations: National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO), State of California

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Are We Ready? Preparing for the Public Health Challenges of Climate Change

2008

In order to better understand the current state of preparedness for the health effects of climate change, the Environmental Defense Fund collaborated with the National Association of City and County Health Officials (NACCHO) and George Mason University to conduct a survey of local health departments from around the country. The survey asked respondents to discuss their perception of climate-related health risks and the status and adequacy of their departments' activities in response to these risks.

Related Organizations: George Mason University, National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO), Environmental Defense Fund

Authors or Affiliated Users: John Balbus, Kristie L. Ebi, Lauren Finzer, Catherine Malina, Amy Chadwick, Dennis McBride, Michelle Chuk, Ed Maibach

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Bay Area Regional Health Inequities Initiative’s (BARHII) Climate Change Quick Guides

June 2014

To build the capacity of local health departments, the Bay Area Regional Health Inequities Initiative (BARHII) Built Environment Committee (BEC) developed five short (2 page) Climate Change Quick Guides that summarize the intersections between and importance of action on climate change, public health and equity. The guides help readers understand how climate change will affect public health, the environmental and public health benefits of climate change actions, how public health departments can participate in climate action planning, and action items that public health departments can take to support climate adaptation efforts at all levels of government.

Related Organizations: Bay Area Regional Health Inequities Initiative (BARHII)

Resource Category: Education and Outreach

 

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Los Angeles Clean Up Green Up Ordinance

April, 2016

In April 2016, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed a groundbreaking ordinance to address environmental justice concerns within three distinct neighborhoods: Boyle Heights, Pacoima-Sun Valley, and Wilmington. For decades, these three communities – comprised primarily of low-income, Latinx individuals and families – suffered a wide range of health effects, due mostly to the high concentration of polluting industrial sites within their neighborhoods. To address these inequalities, LA City Council passed and implemented the Clean Up Green Up Ordinance with a three-pronged goal in mind: (1) to reduce pollution in the most toxic, hotspot areas; (2) to prevent additional pollution; and (3) to revitalize these neighborhoods through supporting local businesses and economic development.

Related Organizations: Los Angeles City Council

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Million Trees Miami - Miami-Dade County, Florida

Miami-Dade County, Florida’s Million Trees Miami initiative aims to plant 1 million trees in lower-income communities with insufficient tree canopy in order to alleviate heat stress in the county. This initiative stems from the County’s 2006 Street Tree Master Plan, which set a goal to achieve 30% tree canopy in Miami-Dade by 2020. Neat Streets Miami, a multi-jurisdictional County Board, is working to implement this goal through the Million Trees Miami initiative. Through a 2016 Urban Tree Canopy Assessment, the County determined that lower-income areas, including predominantly African American and Hispanic neighborhoods, had significantly less tree canopy than their wealthier counterparts. As a result, the County is prioritizing tree planting in its most impoverished and low-canopy areas through initiatives such as the Street Tree Matching Grant. Increased tree canopy cover in communities provides many important adaptation benefits, including protection from flooding, urban heat island mitigation, and improved water and air quality. 

Related Organizations: Miami-Dade County, Florida

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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New Orleans, Louisiana Zika virus response

April 2016

In 2016, when the risk of Zika virus in the United States became higher, the mayor of New Orleans brought together public and private partners to proactively manage those risks and protect the city’s most vulnerable residents. By activating the local public health department, the Board of mosquito control, local physicians, environmental experts, and community members, the government was able to create a comprehensive Zika response plan to protect the public, especially pregnant women. In the first phase, partners educated the public on risks and mitigation strategies, especially healthcare providers and facilities. The city also stepped up vector control to reduce risk and surveillance of mosquito populations to ensure effectiveness. This combination of efforts was intended to ensure that Phases 2 and 3 of the Plan (activated in the case of reported cases of Zika) would be delayed or unnecessary due to preventive measures. By focusing education efforts for the public and healthcare entities on the risk to the most vulnerable subgroup of residents, the partners could ensure that pregnant women would be well-protected. The efforts were funded by general public health funding streams.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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2015 Preliminary Report and Recommendations from the Hawaii Climate Change and Health Working Group

December 2015

The Hawaiʻi Climate Change and Health Working Group was initially convened in 2015 to help the State consider and plan for the impacts of climate change on population-based human health and well-being. The Working Group has developed some preliminary findings and recommendations for policy maker consideration, which are provided in this report.

Related Organizations: State of Hawaii

Resource Category: Planning

 

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