The World Health Organization and the Government of the United Kingdom have launched a new platform on health and climate change to support countries’ efforts to implement the commitments they made at the United Nations Conference on climate change (COP26) last year to build sustainable, resilient and low-carbon health systems.
The Alliance for Transformative Action on Climate Change and Health (ATAC), which is holding its inaugural meeting today, will serve as a platform to bring together government institutions that have joined the COP26 health agenda and relevant partner organizations to coordinate efforts, exchange knowledge and best practices, network and access technical and financial support, link existing initiatives, address common challenges and track global progress.
Currently, 60 countries have formally committed, at Minister of Health level, to at least one of the initiatives on sustainable, climate-resilient, low-carbon health systems promoted under the COP26 Health Program.
“This new alliance aims to maintain momentum and advance action on climate change and health at the country level, to help countries bridge the gap between commitments and implementation as a top priority. said Dr Maria Neira, WHO Director, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health. “Resilient health systems are absolutely crucial for successful adaptation to climate change in all scenarios, while also playing a critical role in low-carbon sustainable development and greening supply chains. health is ready to lead by example”
The main objectives of the alliance are to stimulate and support the progress and ambition of resilient and low-carbon health systems (and their supply chains).
It aims to encourage more countries to make commitments and increase their ambition; elevate the health and climate agenda, promoting innovation and solutions to overcome global constraints to achieving the goals of the COP26 health agenda; and support the development and strengthening of current and emerging evidence and knowledge bases of health arguments for climate change action to inform advocacy, planning and implementation.
Action-oriented working groups will be set up to explore and seek solutions to strategic priorities, based on members’ ideas and demand. The first four working groups should focus on:
- Funding commitments to low-carbon, climate-resilient and sustainable health systems;
- Climate-resilient health systems;
- sustainable low-carbon health systems;
- Greening supply chains and purchasing.
A steering group, made up of representatives from each of the working groups and co-organizers, will help WHO set the strategic direction of the alliance, create synergies between the working groups while promoting a dynamic response. emerging priorities, opportunities and challenges. .
WHO will provide the secretariat for the alliance.