Latin American Solution to a Climate and Health Crisis

Latin American Solution to a Climate and Health Crisis

On March 27th, the SDG Students Program, an SDSN Youth initiative, hosted its first non-english event for students in Mexico and Latin America.

On March 27th, the SDG Students Program, an SDSN Youth initiative, hosted its first non-english event for students in Mexico and Latin America.

The event gave the students the opportunity to chat in small breakout rooms with some of the top Latin American experts on Climate Change and Health: Jessica Zamora Almazan, an evaluator in environmental risk and professor at UNAM, Marisol Yglesias, Climate Change and Health Fellow at the Lancet Global Countdown, and Andrea Hurtado Epstein, Climate Change Coordinator for LAC at Salud Sin Daño A.C. The event was moderated by Alexadandra Peña, Coordinator of the University of British Columbia SDG Hub, and Karla Nolasco, Coordinator of the Autonomous University of Mexico State (UAEM) SDG Hub.

Their expertise and knowledge as young women in the field allowed for three exciting discussions on mitigation and adaptation to climate change, climate justice, and different opportunities for the region.

           

                   

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Marisol’s experience with data allowed her to introduce key concepts of the topic and to map out the multiple roots of the problem at the global level. Along our students she delved into the negative impacts the issue has had on health across Latin America, emphasizing how different communities can bring about change.

Jessica’s own research work in the Atoyac River sparked important questions about the intrusion of industrial and gubernamental projects into rural community spaces and the environmental impact it can have on their health. Our students highlighted the importance of transparency and communication with the communities impacted by climate change and pollution on the ground.

Finally, Andrea helped students map the importance of the health sector in emitting greenhouse gases, the areas of opportunity to make health centers sustainable and resilient, and the important mutual benefits that exist between curving emissions and ensuring human health.

A cross-cutting theme was the importance of analyzing the complexity in the climate change issue and its effects on health, looking at it through the lenses of policy, economy, grassroots work, and systemic intervention beyond individual actions.

           

                   

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Finally, the event encouraged students to utilize their groups and their university resources to bring about climate action and change for a sustainable future.

Student Highlight:

“This was the first opportunity I have attended where I could discuss with Spanish-speakers intersection of sustainable development and public health. Knowing that there are many people interested in this field is very inspiring and motivating as a Colombian-American, I will definitely be attending more events hosted by SDSN Youth” - Camila Rodriguez, Columbia University Hub

           

                   

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