Climate Change is a Health Issue: CHA calls on the federal government to commit Australia to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050

30 September 2021

In the lead up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November, we urge the federal government to commit Australia to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 if not sooner. 

Children Healthcare Australasia (CHA) has written to Prime Minster Scott Morrison and Minster for Health, Greg Hunt to urge them to commit to these targets to protect a healthy future for the children and young people of Australia.

 

Our position:

At CHA we are seeing rising concern across the children’s healthcare sector about the health harms already being caused by climate change.  The latest IPCC report predicting a 4oC rise in global temperature this century has heightened concern about the negative impacts of climate change on the health and wellbeing of today’s children & young people in their lifetimes.  

Human health and equity must be central to all climate change policy decisions.  State and territory governments have recognised this.  We would encourage our national government to do so as well. 

The health sector itself contributes an estimated 7% of Australia’s annual carbon emissions.  That’s why our member hospitals are taking concrete steps to reduce their own emissions significantly by 2030.  However, there is an urgent need for national leadership across the economy and society to make a meaningful difference.

In the lead up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November, we urge the federal government to commit Australia to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 if not sooner.  All sectors of government, economy, and society, the health sector included, can then work together to achieve this important goal for the benefit of our children.   

 

Additional background:

Amidst increasing evidence that global warming is having significant impact on our communities, CHA is committed to supporting member health services to share know-how, ideas and strategies to:

  • increase their use of renewable energy
  • source sustainably grown/manufactured food and other supplies
  • minimize waste generation & greenhouse emissions
  • recycle water


We have joined the Global Green & Healthy Hospitals network, which provides a wealth of resources to support interested health services to take measurable action to reduce their environmental footprint.  All member hospitals of WHA and CHA are encouraged to consider joining the GGHH https://www.greenhospitals.net/(link is external)

 

CHA Green & Healthy Hospitals Hot Topic: We invite members to join the Green & Healthy Hospitals group on our members community.  Here you can share questions, ideas, comments and resources in this forum related to local efforts to make a difference.