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How Climate Change Is Contributing to Skyrocketing Rates of Infectious Disease

Climate change is making outbreaks of disease more common and more deadly. Deforestation and the conversion of wildland for economic development are all pushing people and our farms closer to the wild, previously remote areas where diseases live. Climate warming is also destroying biodiversity, which acts as a safeguard for natural systems, and as the natural balance is upset, species are more likely to pass on powerful pathogens. The warming climate is also allowing disease carrying insects, such as mosquitos, to survive in regions of the world that they haven’t been able to before and infect more humans than ever before. As wild animals/insects and humans come into more close contact with each other, the chance of a deadly disease jumping from wild animal to human dramatically increases. It is vital that we connect public health policy with environment and climate science in order to prevent more common and more deadly infectious diseases in the future.
Abrahm Lustgarten
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