What is it about?

Zoonotic diseases are diseases that spread from animals to humans. They are linked to environmental change. For example, when animal habitats are destroyed by climate change, the animals move and can come into closer contact with humans. This can lead to new diseases. In another example, warmer global temperatures are causing frozen soil (permafrost) to melt. Sometimes these soils contain bacteria or viruses which are released when the land defrosts, and can infect humans.

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Why is it important?

Zoonotic diseases are a big threat to public health; coronavirus is one example of a zoonotic disease, and over 5 million people have died from it. KEY TAKEAWAY: We need to invest in a more joined-up approach to researching and managing diseases that are being caused or made worse by climate change. There needs to be global collaboration, between environmental scientists, zoologists, microbiologists, veterinarians, and public health professionals.

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: The need to adopt planetary health approach in understanding the potential influence of climate change and biodiversity loss on zoonotic diseases outbreaks, Public Health in Practice, November 2021, Elsevier, DOI: 10.1016/j.puhip.2021.100095.
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