Focusing on Climate Change and Human Health 


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The impacts of climate change on human health can be devastating. In recent years, research has shown for example, that anthropogenic climate change is already linked to over a third of warm-season heat-related deaths, and that climate change has the possibility to aggravate over half of the infectious diseases afflicting humans.  

While the direct impacts of extreme weather events and the spread of unfamiliar diseases have increasingly made headlines in the last year, climate change’s impact on health is far more diverse- working directly and indirectly, and impacting physical, mental and social aspects of health. 

In order to highlight this important and growing field, Nature Climate Change covers the Climate-Health nexus in our current issue, and in an online focus.


Our Focus includes: 

  • Viewpoint, featuring the opinions of six experts, who share their views on the urgent requirements and next steps in the fields of climate change and mental health, labour, disease spread, maternal and neonatal health, air quality and nutrition.
  • Q+A with Dr Maria Neira, Director of Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health at the World Health Organization (WHO), who shares her thoughts on successes and next steps following the COP28 UAE Declaration on Climate and Health, a significant step in global recognition of the intersecting crises of Climate Change and Health. 
  • Feature, in which environmental and justice journalist Yessenia Funes, discusses how citizens are increasingly turning to the courts to push for accountability and action and protect their right to a healthy life in the context of ongoing climate change. 

Further content includes a Comment which explores strategies for therapists to best support clients with climate distress, and an Analysis of the capacity of healthcare systems to cope under the increasing pressures of climate change.  

In the online Focus, we additionally include further research, opinion and news pieces from across our pages and the wider Nature Portfolio journals. 


Journal Cover Credit: Alex Whitworth  

Animation Credit: Alex Whitworth  


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Climate Change
Physical Sciences > Earth and Environmental Sciences > Earth Sciences > Climate Sciences > Climate Change
Public Health
Life Sciences > Health Sciences > Public Health
Mental Health
Humanities and Social Sciences > Behavioral Sciences and Psychology > Clinical Psychology > Mental Health