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Commitments Made At COP21 Should Bring About Gains In Health, Food Security

Huffington Post: COP21: A Defining Moment for Human Health
Margaret Chan, WHO Director-General

“…Existing strategies that work well to combat climate change also bring important health gains. Investments in low-carbon development, clean renewable energy, and greater climate resilience are investments in better health. … If the right commitments are made [at the U.N. Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris], efforts to combat climate change will produce an environment with cleaner air, more abundant and safer freshwater and food, and more effective and fair systems for social protection. Healthier people — arguably the world’s most important resource — will be the bonus. … The tremendous progress made since the start of this century in reducing deaths among children and during childbirth, and turning the epidemics of AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis around is likewise at stake. All these hard-won gains can easily be swept away by the tidal wave of health threats unleashed by climate change…” (12/2).

The Hill: In Paris, the stakes could not be higher
Chris Coleman, mayor of St. Paul, Minnesota; Dave Kleis, mayor of St. Cloud, Minnesota; Roy Buol, mayor of Dubuque, Iowa; and Larry Brown, mayor of Natchez, Mississippi

“…As mayors from towns and cities along the world’s top food-producing river basin, we need to be leaders in protecting the planet’s river basins from climate disruption. … While in Paris, we will host talks with representatives from food-producing river basins to assemble the beginning of an international river sustainability agreement among food-producing basins that works to protect both the water and food security of the world. These talks will help determine the challenges of implementing integrated water management and sustainable agricultural practices as well as develop solutions on how food and drinking water security may be achieved at an international level. … [W]e look forward to partnering with Congress and the administration as we push forward with developing a multinational agreement on river basin sustainability…” (12/2).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.