June 3rd 2021: Doctors and Nurses call on G7 Health Ministers to acknowledge the Climate and Ecological Emergency as a public health crises

Posted by: HealthXR - Posted on:

  • Doctors and nurses today handed a letter to G7 health ministers calling for their public acknowledgement that:
    • The Climate and Ecological Emergency (CEE) is a public health crisis.
    • That the Covid-19 pandemic was largely caused by the way our food is sourced, and the way natural habitats are destroyed.
    • That many of the root causes of the CEE also cause illnesses; such as cancer, dementia and depression.
  • This comes 5 days after the head of the World Health Organisation Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus met the group last week in Geneva and read out their letter to the World Health Assembly.

Two retired health professionals today delivered the letter to the G7, Dr Diana Warner (retired GP) and Gayle Clay (retired nurse) on behalf of Doctors for Extinction Rebellion. Dr Warner and one of the group’s leading figures, Dr Grace Thompson said:

“Major changes are needed in the way we structure our health systems and our economic model. If countries had measures of health and wellbeing to mark success, instead of or in addition to GDP, it is unlikely the Covid pandemic would have taken such a hold across the world. If these measures looked long term, rather than just the next quarter, we would not be condemning billions of children to an unsafe, unhealthy and uncertain future.”

This came 5 days after the group handed a letter signed by over a thousand doctors and nurses worldwide along with an hourglass, the symbol of Extinction Rebellion, to Dr Tedros, who later addressed the protestors, saying:

“The pandemic has shown the world what it means to face a global threat. It has also shown us what happens when we are underprepared and fail to cooperate with each other. The risks posed by climate change could dwarf that of any single disease. The pandemic will end. But there is no vaccine for climate change. We have to act now […] in solidarity to prevent and prepare before it’s too late.”

The Lancet Editor Richard Horton also commented: ‘The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us an important lesson—those countries that took early and decisive action successfully protected the health and welfare of their citizens compared with those who delayed. The climate emergency is a more far-reaching public health emergency of international concern than COVID-19. It’s time to accelerate our actions towards decarbonisation, renewable energy, and a green recovery. The costs of inaction will be measured in the preventable deaths of millions of people already living in vulnerable and precarious settings. We cannot let this be the legacy of the present crisis.’

The letter also referenced vaccine-sharing, which the G7 are believed to be discussing today.

See the full letter to the G7 health ministers at www.doctorsforxr.com/g7-letter
See the full letter to the WHO at https://actNow4Life.com (signed by 1000+ health professionals worldwide)
See full videos of Dr Tedros + Dr Richard Horton here: https://www.doctorsforxr.com/news/who

Press contacts

  • Dr Grace Thompson – 07703506609
  • Dr Diana Warner – 07988155757


Notes for journalists

The G7 health ministers were meeting separately in Oxford before the crucial talks in Cornwall 1.
The World Health Assembly is the world’s highest health policy setting body and is attended by delegations from all WHO Member States 2, 3 once per year.During COP 21, the WHO’s then Director General Margaret Chan said ““The evidence is overwhelming: climate change endangers human health. Solutions exist and we need to act decisively to change this trajectory4.”

About Doctors For Extinction Rebellion

Doctors for Extinction Rebellion is a health professional collective who, appreciating that climate change is an impending public health catastrophe, have decided to support and undertake civil disobedience with Extinction Rebellion in a worldwide movement.

Credit: Gareth Morris
Credit: Gareth Morris