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DR.Ahmed Hany:Health Impact of Climate Changes

Professor of Allergy, Chest and Environmental Medicine at the Military Medical Academy

About half a century ago, when scientists warned about the climate changes most people and even many governments did not give the proper response. Postponing facing the problem just deteriorated the conditions more and more. Man produced Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in huge amounts during the last fifty years more than he had done during the fifty thousand years since he had come to earth planet. When the impacts of the climate changes caused losses of land, forests, the economic loss that was the main drive for governments to seek solutions. The USA and the other industrial countries are responsible for the problem. The Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases emission from USA only accounted for at least seventy five percent of all the gases.

climate-change
climate-change

The climate changes pose a direct threat to the health whether it is excessive hot or cold weather. Changes in the amount or pattern of seasonal rains also affect both the style of life, food availability and the pattern of the diseases.

Excessive Heat:
Excessive heat is a major problem and its impact on health is devastating as it may cause death due to sun strokes. Few days ago, more than thousand victim died due to the heat wave in Europe. Forest fires extended in France. It is clear that these are not accidental changes. Heat waves became frequent and the problem in Europe is that residents are accustomed to the cold weather and the residential places there lack the facilities to cool the indoor environment.
Excessive heat cause also draughts and fire in cultivated lands. This may complicate the food problem that affect the world due to the many political and logistic problems.

Excessive Cold:
Excessive cold threatens life of humans and animals. Frost bite may cause gangrenous lesions. Sharp decrease of body temperature affects the cardiovascular system, the skin and the nervous system. All Rheumatic diseases are badly affected by the extreme cold. The animals and birds may leave some parts and reside in other parts changing the food chain and the pattern of the infectious diseases.

The Change in Pattern and Amount of Rain:
The importance of that factor is that it may change the shape of life in many areas. Some rainy geographical areas may suffer from storms and floods forcing people to move to other areas adding more stress on the environmental system. Other rainy areas may suffer draught. Both floods and draughts are disasters that has impacts directly on people’s health and life.

Shortage of food due to destruction Conclusion:
Climate changes are not only about some hot or cold days here and there, it is about permanent changes in geography and the effects on the everyday life with ruining wide inhabited areas and adding more refugees. The catastrophes and disasters due to climate changes are beyond the containment and management capability of most countries. Therefore some form of alliances should be formed until humans can deal properly with the climate changes problems that is unfortunately will not happen in the near future.

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