Obama Reveals Initiative To Address Climate Change, Public Health
On Tuesday, President Obama underscored the connection between climate change and public health as part of an announcement of an initiative to target its effect on communities, the Wall Street Journal reports (McCain/Nelson, Wall Street Journal, 4/7).
Surgeon General Vivek Murthy and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy joined the president at the speech, held at Howard University Medical School (Lederman, AP/Sacramento Bee, 4/7).
Brian Deese, a senior adviser to Obama, said climate change's effect on health extends beyond weather-related injuries, noting that climate change leads to more asthma attacks, heat-related deaths and allergens in the air (Wall Street Journal, 4/7).
In the speech, Obama announced efforts by companies, including Google and Microsoft, to prepare the U.S. health system for the effects of a warmer, more erratic climate, the AP/Bee reports.
For example, Microsoft plans to develop a prototype for drones that can collect a large sample of mosquitoes and digitally analyze their genes and pathogens. The Microsoft project aims to create a system that would offer early warnings about infectious disease outbreaks that could result from climate change.
In addition, Google has said it will donate 10 million hours of advanced computing time on tools, such as risk maps and early warnings for events such as wildfires and oil flares. The company also will use its camera cars to measure methane emissions and natural gas leaks in certain cities this year (Wall Street Journal, 4/7).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.