Omaha.com : Climate change will worsen health ills, expert says
LINCOLN - Worsening asthma, emphysema and congestive heart failure; increased spread of infectious diseases.
The public health consequences of climate change described Monday by a professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center weren't pretty.
Andrew Jameton, a professor of ethics and philosophy at UNMC, told about 140 people gathered in Lincoln for a national town hall meeting on climate change that public health is the de facto barometer of what is happening with climate.
Jameton was among about 10 speakers at the town hall meeting, one of eight being held in the country on the National Climate Assessment. The report was published in draft form in January and is up for public comment until April 12.
Several researchers noted Monday that the world is warming along the worst-case trajectory. While there is considerable public debate and some disagreement by scientists on the fringes, experts in the field of global warming agree that human activity is the primary driver of climate change over the past 50 years.
Under human influence, the world is warming eight times faster than when it goes from an ice age into a warm epoch, the report notes. Future generations are inheriting a world unequipped to handle the coming climate change, it says.
"It demonstrates that while there are skeptics, there are fewer and fewer of them," [Don Wilhite, a professor of applied climate science at UNL] said.