Fragile paradise: health and climate change in the South Pacific

McIver, Lachlan, and Hanna, Elizabeth (2015) Fragile paradise: health and climate change in the South Pacific. In: Butler, Colin D., Dixon , Jane , and Capon, Anthony G., (eds.) Health of People, Places and Planet: reflections based on Tony McMichael’s four decades of contribution to epidemiological understanding. Australia National University Press, Acton, ACT, Australia, pp. 337-350.

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Island countries of the South Pacific are among the most vulnerable in the world to the effects of climate change, including the likely detrimental impacts on health. In general, the burden of these impacts falls disproportionately to particular subsectors of the population, such as the socio-economically deprived, certain occupational groups, those with pre-existing illnesses and residents of areas of high exposure to climate-related phenomena such as floods, droughts and sea level rise. Thus, climate change has the potential to exacerbate social and health inequalities further. As part of a suite of adaptations integrated across sectors, protection of Pacific Island communities from climate change-related health threats requires an evidence-based approach that incorporates a context-based assessment of vulnerability.

Pioneering work by McMichael and colleagues in the 1990s and early 2000s provided templates for performing assessments of vulnerability and compiling plans for adaptation to protect human health from the effects of climate change. This chapter reviews the inclusion of the human health dimension in the climate change impact and adaptation research landscape. We summarise the mixed methods approaches employed to assess climate change and health vulnerabilities and adaptation opportunities in the Pacific region. Results of these assessments are provided, key themes are identified and we map the planned direction of health adaptation to climate change in the Pacific.

Item ID: 40984
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-1-925022-41-4
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Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2015 05:49
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111715 Pacific Peoples Health @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9203 Indigenous Health > 920307 Pacific Peoples Health - Determinants Of Health @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920405 Environmental Health @ 50%
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