Durban, South Africa — What’s bad for the climate is bad for health. That’s the view of international health leaders from more than 30 countries who attended the First Global Climate and Health Summit during the global climate conference under way in Durban (COP17). Representatives of top health organizations and public health federations warned that the apparent lack of movement in the negotiations in Durban is putting the lives of billions of people around the globe at risk – with Africans among the most vulnerable.
Dr Robin Stott, a retired head of a major London hospital and a veteran health and environmental activist, said the crisis would hit Africans already on the margins of survival the hardest. “One of the outcomes I would like to see at the next COP is that nobody over 50 is allowed in, that half the delegates have got to be women, and at least a quarter under the age of 25,” Stott told AllAfrica. “Certainly this pattern of old men discussing with each other about arcane and sometimes trivial issues when the major issues are really just not addressed is just awful.”