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CLIMATE CHANGE AND HEALTH
We live in a world in which the climate is changing at a rate faster than that which society has experienced in modern history. In these times, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is facing new challenges in its ability to fulfill its mission of protecting human health and the environment.
In light of this, federal agencies such as the American Public Health Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have in recent years, begun to step up and play their part. Their response has to do with the fact that climate change, together with other natural and human-made health stressors, influences human health and disease in numerous ways.
In the U.S., public health can be affected by disruptions of physical, biological, and ecological systems, including disturbances originating here and elsewhere. The health effects of these disruptions include increased respiratory and cardiovascular disease, injuries and premature deaths related to extreme weather events, changes in the prevalence and geographical distribution of food- and water-borne illnesses and other infectious diseases, and threats to mental health. This is especially true in locations experiencing extreme heat.
Hot, dry days are not new to Arizonans. However, according to the Sonoran Institute, one of the AALC's longtime partners, the average temperature in the Southwest is warming faster than in other regions in the United States. Scientists project that the Southwest will get even hotter and drier in years to come. Extreme heat waves, drought, high risk of wildfire in rural communities, damaging flash floods, and concentrated heat in neighborhoods in downtown Phoenix and Tucson, known as the urban heat island effect, are just some of the effects of rising temperatures.
Importantly, Sonoran's research shows that extreme weather conditions disproportionately affect Latino communities.
At Arizona State University, there has been a significant amount of research conducted regarding the impacts of extreme heat on public health. Ongoing research and multidisciplinary collaborations have focused on ways to incorporates planners, sustainability advocates, and civil engineers to focus on urban resiliency, all the while focusing on heat related concerns and deaths in the valley.
IN MARICOPA COUNTY
The Maricopa County Department of Public Health (MCDPH) has conducted heat surveillance since 2006. Each year, the County releases its heat death report. See the results from last year.
Additionally, since early 2016, MCDPH has been participating in a peer learning opportunity titled Climate Change and Public Health Learning Collaborative for Urban Health Departments. This learning collaborative is sponsored by the Public Health Institute’s Center for Climate Change and Health with 15 participating sites.
As a part of this learning collaborative, MCDPH has embarked on a climate change and health action planning cycle. Through this process, MCDPH has committed to walking stakeholders through a strategic planning process to identify if a formal organizing body around climate change and health is needed and which organizations should take on organizing or leadership roles. These efforts will continue through December 2017. Resources related to extreme heat in Maricopa County can be found on their website.
TRANSPORTATION AND CLIMATE CHANGE
Human activity is causing climate change. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, in particular, CO2, is a major contributor. The transportation sector accounts for 33% of U.S. GHG emissions, second only to utilities such as power plants. According to the American Public Health Association, improving our transportation system will not only decrease GHG emissions, but also improve our public's health.
One way to reduce GHG emissions is to create environments that support walking and bicycling for all ages and abilities. Complete Streets policies can help accomplish that. Last month, Smart Growth America released much anticipated annual report: The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2016.
A Crash Course on Federal Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Financing Programs: Smart Growth America
Thursday, July 20th; 10-11am Arizona time
Many TOD projects are made possible with the help of financing from federal government programs. The details of those programs, however, are tougher to understand. What programs might your project be eligible for? What time of year do applications open, and when are awards announced? And what do some of the most popular programs look for in applications?
Leading this conversation will be federal program staff from USDOT and community development experts from Smart Growth America. You will also hear from real estate developers who have navigated these programs and put them to use.
2017 HIA Practitioner Workshop
October 2-3, Washington, D.C.
The HIA Practitioner Workshop (formerly HIA of the Americas) presents a unique opportunity for current practitioners of Health Impact Assessment to participate in strategic field building. The workshop is structured around small working groups, with additional presentations and a keynote panel.
The objectives of this two-day workshop are to:
- Build a community of HIA practitioners by offering an intimate forum to network and share ideas and tools that elevate the practice of HIA; and
- Promote excellence in HIA by sharing best practices, tackling challenging HIA related issues, disseminating resources, and beginning the development of new resources for the field.
Don’t miss this opportunity to expand your expertise while contributing to the field of HIA. Register here.
New Partners for Smart Growth Conference
February 1-3, 2018, San Francisco
From the Local Government Commission: As part of our program development efforts, the LGC is conducting a smaller, more focused Call for Presentation Ideas that will be open from June 1 through June 30. Through this process, we are looking for presentation ideas, potential speakers, innovative tools, best practices, and case studies from around the country — to support and inform the work of each of the eight subcommittees. Subcommittees will consider presentation ideas submitted through this process for possible inclusion in sessions within each track.
Click here for more information.
The Funders Network Partners for Places Program - $150,000
Applications Due: July 31, 2017
Eligible Entities: Local governments
In partnership the Urban Sustainability Directors Network, The Funders Network announced round 11 of the Partners for Places grant program. Partners for Places is a matching grant program for cities and counties in the United States and Canada to improve communities by building partnerships between local government sustainability offices and place-based foundations. The grant program provides partnership investments between $25,000 and $75,000 for one-year projects, or $50,000 and $150,000 for two-year projects, with one-to-one match required by one or more local foundations.
For more information, see the funding opportunity description.
Evidence for Action: Investigator-Initiated Research to Build a Culture of Health
Funder: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Evidence for Action (E4A), a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, funds research that expands the evidence base needed to build a Culture of Health. Our mission is to support rigorously designed quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research that yields convincing findings regarding the population health, well-being, and equity impacts of specific policies, programs and partnerships. We are especially interested in research examining the health impacts of programmatic or policy interventions that address factors outside the domain of health care services or public health practice.
More information: Available here