The predictions are many — and dire. As Earth warms, severe weather is expected to increase injuries and harm mental health. Gathering greenhouse gases will probably affect our lungs. Vector-borne diseases — illnesses spread by ticks and insects — will increase. A free, self-paced, massive-open-online course called Climate Change and Health lays out the scary reality, and gets participants involved in solutions.
The course was developed by Rainer Sauerborn, a public health expert who is a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the United Nations’ group of climate experts, along with educational engineer Sophie-Hélène Goulet.
Videos, quizzes and interactive exercises help you understand how climate change affects health, how humans might adapt to physical changes on Earth, and how you can take care of your own health while helping to sustain the planet. It includes commentary and research from IPCC authors and experts from 10 countries.
Climate Change and Health is user-friendly and self-paced. It encourages students to reflect on their own surroundings and advocate for better health for themselves and others. And though there is the option to buy a certificate of completion from Springer Nature, the educational publisher that hosts the course, its evidence-based lessons are free to all.