Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Thousands of deaths by 2012

That could be the scenario here in the UK as a direct consequence of climate change, according to this from The Guardian.

Heatwaves, Malaria, skin cancer, Lyme's disease, plus huge increases in food poisoning cases from nasties like Salmonella, as well as increased rates of air pollution health problems, could account for thousands of additional deaths. It reads a bit like the proverbial pestilence stories from the bible - all that seems to be missing are the plagues of locusts!

It's all going to be OK though, because our Gov is on the case - "health minister Dawn Primarolo said the national health service would have to adapt to deal with the problems posed by climate change. ......... Measures would include: ensuring that hospitals were equipped to deal with the effects of heat, gales, and floods; developing local plans for heatwaves, gales and flooding; disaster preparation; and advising people how to adapt to climate change."

Errrr ..... wouldn't it be better to put more effort into mitigating climate change rather than adapting to it?

But, and again, it's all down to one little word - the report uses that word 'could' again - which seems to be the main culprit for most of this alarming reporting.


Peter said...

'Immortal, and rare, words-time' again!

To be fair.....

Without wishing to let any of the whole sorry bunch off the complicity hook, and acknowledging that you have suggested 'more funds', the powers that be are kinda betwixt a rock and a hard place.

The old 'Two E's' (ECO)nomy vs. (ECO)logy dilemma.

There's also the not so small matter of timescales, even if one accepts that we're talking 'man-caused/worsened', which suggests, albeit a tad optimistically, 'we' can set it all right.

So I think preparatory measures should things go t*ts up are a wise consideration.

But yes, it would be better to prevent than cur... er... cope.

And as you suggest, it's all getting a tad whipped up by the various extremes of scenario, which makes one long for better info, which I am sure all those genuinely trying to do their jobs well in government who I know must exist (heavens, I must be getting soft) will be praying for too.

Not sure our Dawn springs to mind as the best to be on the case, mind. And, like, her boss is so on the case, too.

Or that previous 'measures' so far at the hands of various task forces, the NHS, The Enviro Agency, etc have exactly been covered in glory.

Plus, of course, making sure it all doesn't get corrupted to score more taxes to send in all sorts of enviROInapproriate places 'in the name of...'.

Hey, another acronym - ITNOF - Funding for stuff that is clawed in for supposedly 'green' measures but might not actaully end up doing any good there... if ending up there at all anyway.

Dave said...

Given that lack of 'doing' and the hot air talk that is all pervading I think I'd like to amend your comment just slightly.

Maybe it would be better to prevent than cur... er... hope. ?

Peter said...


You know what I like most about this little blog?

It's that I'd like to think that almost all comments added, so far (careful what you wish for), act more as enhancements to the overall discourse.

And that holds true even when there have been some which might disagree with aspects of a main post or subsequent commnentary.

Long maye this rare, and pleasantly civilised trend continue!