Medical journals promote 'equity' in climate change warning

Editors from top journals argue in a joint editorial that climate change must be aggressively combated by policymakers.

‘Campus Reform’ continues to cover the increasing politicization of medical journals.

Several leading medical journals locked arms to call for aggressive and immediate action on climate change.

The editors-in-chief from the New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, Medical Journal of Australia, and Pharmaceutical Journal proclaimed in a September 5 editorial that “health is already being harmed by global temperature increases and the destruction of the natural world, a state of affairs health professionals have been bringing attention to for decades.” 

To reflect “the severity of the moment,” the article appears in over 200 medical journals across the globe.

“Higher temperatures have brought increased dehydration and renal function loss, dermatological malignancies, tropical infections, adverse mental health outcomes, pregnancy complications, allergies, and cardiovascular and pulmonary morbidity and mortality,” the editorial reads. 

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It continues, “Harms disproportionately affect the most vulnerable, including children, older populations, ethnic minorities, poorer communities, and those with underlying health problems.”

Though many nations have pegged emissions reduction targets for the next several decades, the authors add that the targets are “not enough.”

“Huge investment will be needed, beyond what is being considered or delivered anywhere in the world,” they write. 

The article also affirms that “equity must be at the center of the global response.”

The editors write, “Contributing a fair share to the global effort means that reduction commitments must account for the cumulative, historical contribution each country has made to emissions, as well as its current emissions and capacity to respond.”

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Campus Reform has frequently reported on the accelerating politicization of top medical publications.

For instance, Cell Press announced that academics must fill out a form that aims to “assess inclusion and diversity initiatives and their impact” before they can publish their work in their journals. 

The form asks researchers to check boxes if they “worked to ensure gender balance in the recruitment of human subjects,” “worked to ensure ethnic or other types of diversity in the recruitment of human subjects,” or followed similar inclusivity steps.

In addition, Nature recently claimed that “racism in science is endemic.” 

The publication promised to print a special issue “that examines systemic racism in research” and take further steps to “diversify our authors.”

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @BenZeisloft