An Introduction to Planetary Health

Headshot of Sam Myers

Samuel Myers described a how a rapidly emerging field known as Planetary Health is addressing threats to human health in a recent CHDS seminar. Changes in climate, biodiversity, pollution, and land use, in addition to other biophysical changes, are endangering most dimensions of health. Planetary Health utilizes interdisciplinary approaches to understand and address the impacts of anthropogenic disruption to most of Earth’s natural systems.

Myers, Principal Research Scientist at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the founding Director of the Planetary Health Alliance, explored some of the studies currently conducted in the planetary health field. Topics of discussion included the global health impacts of nutrient changes in staple food crops mediated by rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations, impact of declines in animal pollinators on mortality from non-communicable diseases, and impacts of climate change and climate shocks on food security. He also explored the implications for expanding the role of public health practitioners within the field and addressing challenges in data collection, novel analytic approaches, and dissemination of results within a developing field of study.

Learn more: Read about the Planetary Health Alliance
Learn more: Watch the video, Sam Myers – “Planetary Health: Protecting Global Health on a Rapidly Changing Planet”

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