Climate change is expected to have a number of mostly adverse effects on human health, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, including:
- heat-related mortality and morbidity
- mortality and morbidity related to extreme weather.
In addition, the following hazards to human health are predicted:
- increases in water and food-borne disease
- changes in seasonality and distribution of vector-borne diseases (that is diseases spread by organisms, such as mosquitoes)
- increased air pollution (ground-level ozone and particles), and
- adverse impacts on community and mental health.
Addressing the health impacts of hotter temperatures
NSW Heatwave Sub Plan
Heatwaves impact on human health, infrastructure, transport, emergency management, and primary industries. In 2011 the NSW State Emergency Management Committee established the NSW Heatwave Sub Plan to detail the coordinated management of heatwave events, so as to reduce risks and counter effects on the community.
Beat the Heat
NSW Health has developed comprehensive guidance and information to help the State prepare for and stay healthy in the heat and care for people who are at risk of heat-related illness. Including:
- How to prepare for a heatwave
- Heat related illnesses and symptoms, with First Aid responses
- And information in other languages
- The IPCC 5th Assessment Report Chapter on Human Health from Working Group II (Chapter 11) (PDF 3.58 MB)
- NSW Public Health Special Report on the Environmental Health Challenges of climate change (PDF 573 KB)