Climate Change and Environmental Health Resources

The following online resources were compiled to help Region VIII health centers stay informed about climate change, the role healthcare plays in addressing climate change, and how environmental factors impact patient health. Please contact the Programs Coordinator, Pandemic Response & Preparedness if you have any questions about these materials or would like to share other useful resources you have found.

Please click or scroll down for:
Fact Sheets, Reports, and Statistics
Resources Addressing the Role of Healthcare
Healthcare Provider Resources
Education and Training Resources
Plant-Based Diet Resources
Other Recommended Resources

FACT SHEETS, REPORTS, AND STATISTICS

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) 
Environmental Justice Index (EJI)
The Environmental Justice Index uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to rank the cumulative impacts of environmental injustice on health for every census tract.

American Communities Project
Report: Mapping Climate Risks by County and Community (February 17, 2021)
The American Communities Project leveraged data from Four Twenty-Seven, a physical climate risk data firm, to understand how the climate risks manifest where populations and infrastructure may be especially vulnerable.

American Lung Association
Report: Discussing Links Between Climate Change and Community Health (May 31, 2021)
The American Lung Association released its 2021 State of the Air Report, a national data resource on air pollutants and pollution levels across the United States.

EcoAmerica
Report: American Climate Perspectives Survey (May 26, 2021)
The American Climate Perspectives Survey, from EcoAmerica, demonstrates how to ignite climate action across the country, Americans need to be engaged locally, whether they are from rural, semi-rural, suburban, or urban communities.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
EJScreen: Environmental Justice Screening and Mapping Tool
The newly updated and redesigned EJScreen, is a publicly available, award-winning environmental justice (EJ) screening and mapping tool.

Health and Environmental Funders Network (HEFN) 
Investing at the Frontlines of Climate Change
This toolkit is a joint effort by eight philanthropy-serving organizations (PSOs). Resources related to climate, health, and equity work are included in this toolkit.

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 
Report: Climate Change 2022: Impact, Adaptation, and Vulnerability (February 27, 2022)
This Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report shows climate change’s current and future impacts on physical and mental health.

The National Academies of Science, Engineering, Medicine
Report: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Information for Decision Making (October 4, 2020)
This report examines existing and emerging approaches used to generate and evaluate greenhouse gas emissions information from local to global levels and develops a framework for evaluating greenhouse gas emissions information to support and guide policymakers.

Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) 
Report: Health Costs from Climate Change and Fossil Fuel Pollution Tops $820 Billion a Year (May 20, 2021)
This report shows the health costs of climate change and how the burden falls heaviest on vulnerable communities.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)
Poll: Facing Extreme Weather is Changing Americans’ Views About Need for Climate Change Action (June 21, 2021)
This poll finds that facing extreme weather events is impacting Americans’ views about the need for climate change action.

The Center for American Progress (CAP)
How the Office of Climate Change and Health Equity Can Respond to the Health Threats of the Climate Crisis
This report was published on January 30, 2023. This resource examines how OCCHE can provide the connective tissue needed to harness resources, leverage authorities, and coordinate expertise across HHS and the federal government in order to protect the nation’s health from risks associated with climate change.

The Lancet
Report: The Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change 2022
Published annually, the Lancet Countdown on health and climate change is an international, multidisciplinary collaboration, dedicated to monitoring the evolving health profile of climate change, and providing an independent assessment of the delivery of commitments made by governments worldwide under the Paris Agreement.

Trust for America’s Health (TFAH)
Report: Climate Change & Health: Assessing State Preparedness (December 9, 2020)
This report assessed all 50 states and the District of Columbia on their level of preparedness for the health effects of climate change and found a great deal of variation in their level of preparedness.

Report: Climate Change & Health Case Study: Advancing Distributional Equity in Climate Adaptation (October 13, 2021)
Climate change is an international phenomenon but its effects, including its impacts on human health, are local – often depending on geography, weather patterns, and a community’s resources and degree of resilience, including the historic and current-day consequences of racism.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Climate and Health Outlook
The Office of Climate Change and Health Equity (OCCHE) has created the Climate and Health Outlook. This resource provides a retrospective look at how heat and drought affected the U.S. in the summer of 2022.

RESOURCES ADDRESSING THE ROLE OF HEALTHCARE

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
Reducing Healthcare Carbon Emissions: A Primer on Measures and Actions for Healthcare Organizations to Mitigate Climate Change
As a significant contributor to climate change, the healthcare sector faces an urgent call to action to reduce its carbon footprint and protect communities from climate threats.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Building Resilience Against Climate Effects (BRACE) Framework
This webpage contains information on the Building Resilience Against Climate Effects (BRACE) framework. BRACE is a five-step process that allows health officials to develop strategies and programs to help communities prepare for the health effects of climate change.

CleanMed
CleanMed 2023 Conference
CleanMed is the premier national conference for leaders in healthcare sustainability. It is the platform for healthcare leaders to convene, collaborate, and conduct societal transformation for individual, community, and planetary health.

Collective Energy Company
Collective Energy Company
This webpage provides information on the Collective Energy Company’s mission to educate health centers about their energy options, how to design power solutions based on health centers’ site-specific needs, and how to access low-cost funding that is only available to non-profit health centers.

Commitment to Action-2022 Clinton Global Initiative
A video containing Secretary Hillary Clinton’s endorsement of the important role Federally Qualified Health Centers play in the rising energy burden in the United States.

Direct Relief
The Power for Health Initiative
Direct Relief has launched The Power for Health initiative to help ensure nonprofit community health centers and charitable clinics in the U.S. maintain power and remain operational through increasingly common power outages resulting from disasters and electrical grid failures.

EcoAmerica
Climate for Health
EcoAmerica’s Climate for Health program partners with America’s leading health associations and institutions to make climate change a top national health priority.

Health Affairs
Adding a Climate Lens to Health Policy in the United States
This report reviews how healthcare policymakers must integrate a climate lens as they develop health system interventions.

HealthCare Without Harm
Healthcare Without Harm
This webpage contains resources on how healthcare can reduce its environmental footprint.

National Academy of Medicine (NAM)
Healthcare Leaders Speak Out on Climate Change
Hear directly from healthcare leaders about the urgent need to tackle the climate crisis to protect health and equity, and how their organizations are taking action.

Practice Greenhealth
Sustainability Solutions for Health Care
Practice Greenhealth is a health care membership organization that provides sustainability solutions that benefit patients and employees, communities, financial security, and the environment.

STAT
How the Inflation Reduction Act Can Help Decarbonize the Health Care Industry
This opinion article discusses how the Inflation Reduction Act can help decrease greenhouse gas emissions from the the health care industry in the United States.

The New England Journal of Medicine
After COP26 — Putting Health and Equity at the Center of the Climate Movement
This New England Journal of Medicine Perspective, calling for direct action on climate change and health equity, includes input from the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health, the Senior Advisor on Climate Health and Equity, and other officials from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) noting that healthcare accounts for 8.5 percent of overall U.S. carbon emissions with a disproportionate impact on at-risk communities.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Climate, Health, and Equity
This document outlines eight critical roles for HHS in addressing the climate emergency and proposes specific actions across the Department and its component agencies to carry out these roles.

Climate Change & Health Equity Resources
The Office of Climate Change and Health Equity (OCCHE) created a list of climate change data tools and resources.

Healthcare Sector Commitments to Emissions Reduction and Resilience
The Healthcare Sector Climate Pledge invites organizations to commit to lowering their greenhouse gas emissions and building more climate-resilient infrastructure.

HHS History and the Office of Climate Change and Health Equity
This webpage explores the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) responsibility to safeguard the public from climate change, including the inequities it exacerbates.

U.S. House of Representative Ways and Means Committee
Report: Healthcare and the Climate Crisis: Preparing America’s Healthcare Infrastructure
The Ways and Means Committee released a new report detailing the role the U.S. health system plays in the climate crisis.

World Resources Institute
How Climate Change Affects Health and How Countries Can Respond
This website discusses how climate change will increase the strain on health services around the world.

HEALTHCARE PROVIDER RESOURCES

Airnow.gov
Protect Your Lungs from Wildfire Smoke or Ash
This fact sheet provides an overview of how individuals can protect themselves from wildfire smoke or ash.

Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments (ANHE)
Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments
The Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments is the only national nursing organization focused solely on the intersection of health and the environment. This webpage contains a compilation of helpful tools, databases, and other resources for the nurse interested in environmental health.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Building Resilience Against Climate Effects (BRACE) Framework
This webpage contains information on the Building Resilience Against Climate Effects (BRACE) framework. BRACE is a five-step process that allows health officials to develop strategies and programs to help communities prepare for the health effects of climate change.

Climate and Health Evaluation
This webpage contains videos that support grant recipients and practitioners in the field in conducting local evaluations of climate and health adaptation interventions to better understand and improve impact.

Climate and Health Program
This webpage contains information on the CDC’s Climate and Health Program which supports state, tribal, local, and territorial public health agencies as they prepare for the health impacts of a changing climate.

Climate-Ready States & Cities Initiative
This webpage provides resources to help state, tribal, local, and territorial health departments prepare for and respond to the health effects that a changing climate may bring to their communities.

Community Health Association of Mountain/Plains States (CHAMPS)
Protect Yourself From Wildfire Smoke
Patient education document that informs patients about the health effects of wildfire smoke as well as precautions to minimize exposure.

Montana Health Professionals for a Healthy Climate 
Montana Health Professionals for a Healthy Climate
This website hopes to increase awareness amongst Montanans of the effects of climate change on the health of our patients, wildlife, and communities in Montana.

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
Climate Change and Health
This webpage has free continuing medical education courses available to healthcare professionals and anyone else who wants to learn more about climate change and health.

The Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health (MSCCH)
The Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health
This consortium provides opportunities for medical providers to get involved in addressing climate change and contains resources about equitable climate solutions that will protect and promote the health of all people.

State-Level Activity
This webpage provides climate change-related resources for each U.S. state.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Climate and Health Outlook
The Climate and Health Outlook is an effort to inform health professionals and the public on how our health may be affected in the coming months by climate events and provide resources to take proactive action.

Climate Change Resilience and Healthcare System Considerations
Climate change continues to negatively impact national security, environmental stability, and human health conditions. This resource provides an overview of climate trends in the U.S., outlining the impacts of climate-related illness and injury on health system operations, care delivery, and patient surge.

EDUCATION AND TRAINING RESOURCES

American Public Health Association (APHA)
Making the Connection: Climate Changes Health
A four-part webinar series cohosted by APHA and EcoAmerica that investigates the health impacts of climate change. The series explores the connection between climate change and key areas of health including allergies and asthma, health risks in children, mental health, and transportation and healthy community design as a mitigation approach.

Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH)
Climate Change & Health
This webpage of ASPPH’s Task Force on Climate Change and Health contains recommendations for collective action to reduce the impacts of climate change on population health. While resources are geared toward an academic public health audience, they underscore the need for partnerships between health care and public health.

Climate for Health
Climate for Health Ambassadors Training
This three-hour training equips health professionals with the knowledge, hands-on experience, and resources to speak and act confidently on climate change solutions.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Wildfire Smoke and Your Patients’ Health
Online course with information about the health effects associated with wildfire.

Air Cleaners and Air Filters in the Home
This article discusses how to select the correct air cleaners and air filters for a home or office.

Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education
Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education
This website provides educational and training resources for health professional training institutions, health societies, and regional health organizations in order to create a global climate-ready health sector.

National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC)
Environment, Climate Change & Health: Federal Updates & Resources for Action
This webinar recorded on December 1, 2022, provides an overview of federal updates regarding the environment, climate change and the impacts to health centers.

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIH)
Climate Change, Air Pollution, and Health: What Lies Ahead
This NIH Climate Change and Health seminar series webinar is hosted by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and features Jonathan M. Samet, M.D., M.S., Colorado School of Public Health and Tami Bond, Ph.D. , Colorado State University.

The National Institute for Healthcare Management (NICHM)     
Climate Impacts Mental Health: The Importance of Climate-Resilience
This recorded webinar explores the interconnectedness of climate change and mental health, focusing on climate resilience and what can be done to combat these issues.

Environmental Health
This webpage contains printable infographics and free pre-recorded webinars that provide information about the relationship between people and their environment and ways to promote human health and well-being.

The New England Journal of Medicine
Climate Change, Fossil-Fuel Pollution, and Children’s Health
This article discusses the consequences of fossil-fuel pollution on children.

The Weitzman Institute
The Environment as a Social Determinant of Health
This presentation highlights the work of some of the world’s leading experts in environmental health and discusses the impact of heat on health, and how some innovative communities are using hyper-local data and AI to implement effective, targeted solutions.

Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) 
Climate Change Case Studies Series
This two-part case studies series examines efforts by states and localities to conceptualize and implement climate change adaptation programs that are centered on equity.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) 
Webinar Series: Accelerating Healthcare Sector Action on Climate Change and Health Equity
The webinar series features financing resources available to support facility investments in sustainable infrastructure development, as well as renewables and tools to support emergency preparedness and response.

World Health Organization (WHO)
Ambient (Outdoor) Air Pollution
This webpage contains information on what ambient air pollution is and how it is measured.

PLANT-BASED DIET RESOURCES

American College of Lifestyle Medicine
American College of Lifestyle Medicine
Lifestyle medicine is a medical specialty that uses therapeutic lifestyle interventions as a primary modality to treat chronic conditions including, but not limited to, cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. This resource provides resources on the six pillars of lifestyle medicine including a whole-food, plant-predominant eating pattern, physical activity, restorative sleep, stress management, and avoidance of risky substances.

Farm Sanctuary
A Handy Guide to a Plant-Based Diet
This webpage provides a guide on how to choose plant-based food that is produced through sustainable and fair labor practices to support meaningful change for animals, humans, and our planet.

Because You Already Care: 23 Reasons to Leave Animals Off Your Plate in 2023
This resource provides a wide variety of reasons for individuals to transition to a plant-based diet.

The National Academies of Science, Engineering, Medicine
Alternative Protein Sources
The National Academies’ Food Forum hosted a workshop to explore the state of the science on alternative protein sources as they relate to issues around diet quality, nutrition, and sustainability. This brief summarizes the discussions held during the workshop.

National Jewish Health
A Beginner’s Guide to a Plant-Based Diet
This website contains a wide variety of resources on beginning a whole-food, plant-based diet.

Nature
The Environmental Footprint of Global Food Production
This article provides a current global geospatial analysis that details the greenhouse gas emitted from different types of food production.

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)
A Vegan Diet: Eating for the Environment
A plant-based diet can have a significant positive impact on the environment and an individual’s overall health.

Shifting to Plant-Based Diets Can Help Mitigate Climate Change
This webpage has information on how shifting to a plant-based diet can help mitigate climate change.

Plant Based Telehealth
Lifestyle Telemedicine Appointments
Plant-Based Lifestyle medicine is the evidence-based practice of promoting healthy behaviors and lifestyle modification. This webpage offers free telemedicine appointments with a lifestyle medicine doctor.

Practice Greenhealth
Plant Powered 30
Plant Powered is a 30-day challenge to inspire individuals to choose a plant-forward meal once per day (and hopefully more!).

The Plant Based Treaty
The Plant Based Treaty
As a companion to the UNFCCC/Paris Agreement, The Plant Based Treaty initiative is a grassroots campaign designed to put food systems at the forefront of combating the climate crisis. Modeled on the popular Fossil Fuel Treaty, the Plant Based Treaty aims to halt the widespread degradation of critical ecosystems caused by animal agriculture and to promote a shift to healthier, sustainable plant-based diets.

The Washington Post
Here’s Exactly How Your Diet Affects the Planet, a Landmark Study Finds
In this article, researchers amassed data on food production and its impacts on the Earth including disturbances to wild-animal habitats, water use and pollution, and contribution to planetary warming. Their findings reveal what types of food production have the greatest consequences, and where.

Veganuary
Veganuary
Veganuary encourages and supports people and businesses alike to move to a plant-based diet as a way of protecting the environment, preventing animal suffering, and improving the health of millions of people.

World Resources Institute
Cool Food
Cool Food is an initiative of the World Resources Institute’s Food program, and Climate-Friendly Diets program. This website helps people and organizations reduce the climate impact of their food through shifting toward more plant-rich diets.

OTHER RECOMMENDED RESOURCES

Centers for Disease Control and Protection (CDC)
Protect Yourself from Wildfire Smoke
This webpage contains information on how individuals can protect themselves from wildfire smoke.

Colorado Health Institute (CHI)
Climate and Health-Acclimate Colorado
Acclimate Colorado, a partnership between metro Denver public health agencies and CHI, is designed to help communities drive policy changes that will help Colorado communities become more resilient in the face of climate change, and to improve health equity for the people most profoundly — and unfairly — affected by climate change.

Why Health Equity and Climate Change Go Hand in Hand
This article discusses the impacts of climate change on vulnerable populations in the state of Colorado.

Colorado State University
Worker Health and Safety Resources
Wildfire smoke is harmful to human health and is especially burdensome to those with respiratory conditions like asthma. This webpage contains resources to help outdoor workers create a plan to protect themselves while working outdoors.

Farmworker Justice
Farmworkers and the Climate Crisis
This webpage contains resources on climate change and its impact on farmworkers.

Technology, Entertainment, and Design (TED) Talk    
It’s Impossible to Have Healthy People on a Sick Planet
In this TED Talk, Shweta Narayan highlights the interdependence of environmental and human health and emphasizes the necessity of placing health at the heart of all climate solutions.

The Center for American Progress (CAP)
Climate Change
This website offers a wide variety of articles and reports about climate change.

The Lancet
Call for Emergency Action to Limit Global Temperature Increases, Restore Biodiversity, and Protect Health
This webpage provides an overview of the impact of an increase in global temperature on biodiversity and health.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
Climate Resources at the National Academies
This webpage contains reports, videos, interactive games, and events all related to climate change.

The National Institute for Healthcare Management (NICHM)                                                 
Climate Changes Health: Extreme Heat
The NICHM Foundation has published an infographic that highlights the dangers of extreme heat, the relationship with the built environment, ways for individuals to protect themselves, and solutions to promote heat mitigation and management.

Climate Change is Affecting Our Mental Health
This infographic highlights the challenges facing humanity in regard to mental well-being and climate change as well as offers steps that can be taken to build mental health resilience.

The White House
Justice40 Initiative
Through the Justice40 Initiative, the United States government has made it a goal that 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain Federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved, and overburdened by pollution.

Partnership for Resilient Communities (PRC)
Partnership for Resilient Communities
The Partnership for Resilient Communities works to transform the national urban climate resilience field by increasing the number of leaders of color in the urban field of practice, advancing approaches that build the resilience of people and places through influence-building and policy approaches, community education and engagement, and the installation of clean energy and green infrastructure.

University of Colorado Health (UCH)
How to Stay Safe When Wildfires Generate Dangerous Air Pollution
This webpage contains information on how individuals can protect themselves from air pollution.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) provides federally funded assistance to reduce the costs associated with home energy bills, energy crises, weatherization, and minor energy-related home repairs.

World Health Organization (WHO)
Climate Change and Health
This webpage provides an overview of climate change and its impact on health globally.