Pediatricians say they are seeing the impacts of climate change in children in many ways, from asthma to allergies to premature births.
As wildfires burned near San Francisco last summer, pediatrician Lisa Patel says she saw firsthand how climate change can affect health.
“Around late September, I remember shift after shift, I just, I had several deliveries that i would go to on each shift of moms that were coming in, in labor about a month to two months early, says Dr. Lisa Patel
Previous studies show air pollution and excess heat can cause premature labor. the American Academy of Pediatrics calls climate change one of the top health threats to children around the world.
“What are the effects of climate change on children?”
Patel: “everything you can imagine, and I think that’s why all of us are so involved in this. Now we understand that climate change affects every, every part of our bodies and our health,” Dr. Lisa Patel.
That includes pollution triggered asthma … severe allergies with longer allergy seasons… and heat illness with rising temperatures.
In an effort to protect families, US pediatricians across the country are now banning together and lobbying lawmakers for change.
Climate change advocates with the American academy of pediatrics are pushing for new laws on renewable energy, passing climate resolutions and educating other physicians.
Montana pediatrician Lori Bryon founded the program after extreme weather displaced families on the Indian reservation where she works.
Whether it’s having to move out of your home or losing your economic security or sometimes for farmers and ranchers, losing their farm or their livestock. And all of those things affect us as a society and affect our children, said Dr. Lori Byron.
Byron says we need to fight for change so our children can have a better tomorrow.
In a historic UK ruling last year, air pollution was blamed in the death of a London nine-year-old.