• 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. 

Resources are automatically presented by rating, but can be sorted by date or title. Apply additional filters to narrow by resource type, state, region, impact, or jurisdictional focus.

 

 

20 results are shown below.

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Resource

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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Safe haven in the storm: Protecting lives and margins with climate-smart health care

January 2017

Climate-smart health care as described in this report addresses how hospitals and health systems can prepare for climate change and its implications for public health, with a focus on extreme weather events.  The costs for hospitals and care facilities associated with lack of preparation for these events - including severe storms, flooding, extreme temperatures, wildfires - are discussed in detail. The report also describes the benefits of preparedness, how “smart executives can take action,” and provides case studies of adaptation to extreme events in the health sector.

Related Organizations: Health Care Without Harm

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Rhode Island 2015 Climate Change and Health Resiliency Report

2015

The Rhode Island Department of Health’s Climate Change and Health Resiliency Report identifies the climate change impacts on public health in Rhode Island, and offers strategies that can strengthen the effectiveness of public health management for climate impacts in the state. The report describes the threats that climate change poses to the state and its vulnerable populations, and details ongoing and planned best practices to counter these threats and protect vulnerable groups. The Department of Health Climate Change Program (HEALTH) has implemented climate adaptation projects that are highlighted throughout the report, along with Rhode Island case studies, and examples of best practices from across the country.

Related Organizations: Rhode Island Department of Health

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Primary Care: Enhancing Health Care Resilience for a Changing Climate (HHS)

December 15, 2014

Primary Care: Enhancing Health Care Resilience for a Changing Climate, from the U. S. Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS), assesses the current climate and weather related risks for health care infrastructure, and proposes some best practices for building resilience to climate change. The HHS climate resilience guide is intended to address a wide range of health care facility vulnerabilities. It spans risks related to buildings, utilities and infrastructure, including IT infrastructure, supply chain issues, the needs of staff, and the role of the healthcare facility in the broader community.

Related Organizations: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

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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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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Michigan Climate and Health Adaptation Program

2013

The Michigan Department of Community Health has developed the Michigan Climate and Health Adaptation Program (MICHAP) to prepare for health risks from climate change. Through support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), MICHAP is building a climate-resilient public health system for Michigan at the state, local health department, and community levels. 

Related Organizations: Michigan State University, Michigan Department of Community Health, University of Michigan

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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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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Heat in U.S. Prisons and Jails: Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change

August 31, 2015

This paper from the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law addresses how increased temperatures and heat waves caused by climate change affect prisons, jails, and their staff and inmate populations. Recommendations are offered for what correctional departments can do to prepare for greater heat and minimize the dangers it poses.  

Related Organizations: Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Columbia Law School

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Health Problems Heat Up: Climate Change and the Public's Health

October 2009

This report, from Trust for America's Health (TFAH), examines the human health effects of climate change and the role public health authorities must play in preventing and preparing for further climate-related damage. It also explores the needs of state and local health departments as they set out to conduct climate change needs assessments and provides a framework to develop strategic plans to prevent and prepare for climate change. TFAH makes policy recommendations pertaining to increased action from federal, state, and local governments.

Related Organizations: Trust for America's Health

Authors or Affiliated Users: Jeffrey Levi, Serena Vinter, Daniella Gratale, Chrissie Juliano, Laura M. Segal

Resource Category: Monitoring and Reporting

 

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