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The State of Climate Adaptation in Public Health: An Assessment of 16 U.S. States

Climate change poses significant threats to the health of individuals and communities, as well as the delivery of healthcare services. Human morbidity and mortality rates are rising due to extreme heat events and changing patterns of water-borne and vector-borne diseases, and healthcare infrastructure is at risk from extreme events. Climate adaptation actions are taken to either avoid or take advantage of climate change impacts either by decreasing vulnerability or increasing resilience.

Local efforts to address climate change and public health in Philadelphia

The City of Philadelphia’s Department of Public Health (PDPH) is working to integrate climate change action into public health planning and outreach. While a formal climate and adaptation plan is still in progress, PDPH is actively working to engage the public on issues regarding climate-related risks to health and safety. PDPH aims to clarify public health concerns based on climate projections, identify vulnerable populations, secure funding and resources to quantify and estimate possible disease burdens caused by climate change, and develop and implement adaptation strategies.

In partnership with the communities we serve, the Health Department assures, promotes and protects the health of the people of Multnomah County.

The mission of the Department of Public Health is to protect and promote the health of all Philadelphians and to provide a safety net for the most vulnerable.

Equitable Adaptation: Building climate change adaptation capacity for Make the Road NY and Central Queens

Make the Road New York (MRNY) serves immigrants and community members throughout the five boroughs of New York at their three centers in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island. They provide services and guidance to new and resident immigrants in the form of legal services, education, community organizing, and enacting policy change.

Iowa City Climate Action and Adaptation Plan

The Iowa City community is ready to respond to the challenges of climate change. Iowa City has, and will continue to be impacted by the effects of greenhouse gas increases in the global atmosphere produced by fossil fuel use and other human activities related to lifestyle choices. In the last several years, Iowa City has experienced increases in flood magnitude and frequency, intense precipitation events, warmer temperatures, strong winds and changes in plant communities. Experts predict these changes will continue and likely intensify as levels of emissions continue to increase.

Climate Change in Jackson County: An Examination of the Health Impacts of Climate Change

In July and August of 2017, a series of storms produced hazardous flooding conditions throughout multiple areas of Jackson County. For the safety of residents, multiple roads, highways, beaches, parks, and hiking trails were temporarily shut down. While no individual weather event can be linked directly to climate change, severe storms like those experienced in the summer of 2017 are typical of what is to be expected due to a changing climate.