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© 2016

Climate Sensitive Adaptation in Health

Imperatives for India in a Developing Economy Context

Book

Table of contents

About this book

Introduction

This book focuses on the risks that climate change poses for the health sector. It discusses the current vulnerabilities to climate-sensitive diseases, the resultant mortality and morbidity in human populations, the projected risks in connection with increasing global warming, and the options for tackling the adverse impacts of climate change. Adapting to climate change so as to effectively address the risks for and adverse impacts on the health sector requires an in-depth understanding of current deficits in health sector preparedness for climate-sensitive illnesses, as well as future plans and programs for increasing adaptive capacity and building resilience.

The book situates climate and health adaptation concerns in the broader context of developing countries, providing insights that can be useful for other countries as well, helping them further their health adaptation efforts. In India, poverty and inadequate access to basic water, health and sanitation services combine with climate-related events to adversely impact health outcomes. Three case studies on the occurrence of heat stress, flooding, and extreme cyclonic events in India are presented along with a critical assessment of the level of preparedness and capacity of healthcare facilities to respond to the threats posed by climate change. The book presents the key challenges faced in reducing the risks posed to the health sector by climatic factors, and highlights the most important opportunities for promoting resilience and adaptation to achieve sustainable development.


Dr. Dasgupta’s excellent book reviews the health risks of climate change, outlines an operational framework for health adaptation, and describes the socioeconomic context for adaptation in India.   
-  Kristie L. Ebi
Professor, Departments of Global Health, and Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Washington, USA

This pioneering work contributes to an the understanding of the preparedness in India to manage health risks from such (climate) change on the basis of detailed data analysis, both from large national surveys and contextualized field based surveys.
-  Kanchan Chopra
Former Director and Professor, Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi, India

Keywords

Adaptation Decision-making Climate Change Adaptation Climate Impact on Health Sector Climate Sensitivity and Adaptation Health Adaptation to Climate Health Sector Programs Sustainable Development and Health Adaptation

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Environmental Economics UnitInstitute of Economic GrowthNew DelhiIndia

About the authors

Purnamita Dasgupta is Ford Foundation Chair in Environmental Economics and Acting Head, Environmental and Resource Economics Unit of the Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi, India. She has also served as visiting professor at institutes such as the University of Cambridge (UK), Carey Business School of Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, USA), and the University of Calcutta (Kolkata, India). She obtained her PhD from the Centre for Economic Studies and Planning, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Her areas of research interest include environmental and natural resource economics, health economics, development economics, and research methods. 

Having published articles in respected journals, she has also been involved with several macro and micro level economic studies for assessing the contribution of ecosystem services in various decision-making contexts. She is a member of many advisory and scientific committees related to environment and climate change. She has been a Coordinating Lead Author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a member of its Summary for Policymakers and Synthesis Report writing teams, and the IPCC’s Scientific Steering Group on Economic Valuation, Costing and Ethics.  She has been associated with several national and international assessments and research initiatives. Her national contributions include research under programs for India’s National Communications to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, greenhouse gas emissions modeling for India’s Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, drafting of legislation on electronic waste in India, and the Expert committee to evolve environmental standards in India, among others.

Bibliographic information

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Reviews

Climate change is already causing morbidity and mortality, with risks projected to increase significantly in coming decades if no additional public health preventions are implemented.  The impacts disproportionally affect populations in low- and middle-income countries.  Dr. Dasgupta’s excellent book Climate Sensitive Adaptation in Health: Imperatives for India in a Developing Economy Context reviews the health risks of climate change, outlines an operational framework for health adaptation, and describes the socioeconomic context for adaptation in India.  Managing the current burden of climate-sensitive health outcomes, such as undernutrition, malaria, and diarrheal disease, means ensuring universal access to safe water, improved sanitation, vaccination, and child health services, and enhancing disaster risk management as extreme weather and climate events increase in frequency and intensity.  Developing effective and efficient longer-term adaptation policies and programs requires capacity building at local to national levels, enhanced and sustained surveillance, early warning systems, and research and development.  The book provides much needed critical and practical insights for facilitating the transition to climate-resilient health systems.
-  Kristie L. Ebi
Professor, Departments of Global Health and Occupational and Environmental Health Sciences, University of Washington, USA


This is a forward looking volume focusing on the interface between health policy and climate change, a subject little researched in India. Climate change is expected to result in an increase in extreme events such as cyclones, floods and heat waves. This pioneering work contributes to an the understanding of the preparedness in India to manage health risks from such change on the basis of detailed data analysis, both from large national surveys and contextualized field based surveys.
The in-depth analysis provides insights into interventions required in health policy in the short run and directions for an innovative design of adaptation measures in the longer run. The study, a first of its kind will be of interest to experts in health policy and researchers working on climate change, adaptation measures and sustainable development. 
-  Kanchan Chopra
Former Director and Professor, Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi, India