Year 2, Month 11, Day 12: Now Watch This Drive!

More on the health impact study, this time from the LA Times:

Six climate change-related events taking place between 2000 and 2009 cost the U.S. about $14 billion in health costs, researchers reported Monday in the journal Health Affairs.

Most of those costs — 95% — were attributable to the value of lost lives, they wrote. About $740 million originated in “760,000 encounters with the health care system.”

The coauthors, affiliated with the Natural Resources Defense Council, UC Berkeley’s Boalt Law School in Berkeley and UC San Francisco wrote that their article was “a first attempt to synthesize health data from the literature on events related to climate change and to develop a uniform method of quantifying their health costs.”

The events they studied are the types of climate-related disasters that are expected to occur more often in the future as the Earth’s climate warms, they said.

There. You’ve covered your ass, now.

Sent November 8:

The Health Affairs study on the costs of climate change is particularly important when considered alongside the Department of Energy report released last week which noted a “monster” increase in greenhouse gas emissions for 2010, suggesting that the extreme weather we’ve witnessed so far has been merely a preview of coming attractions. For all their bluster about reducing the deficit, conservative politicians don’t seem to remember the old aphorism, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When we consider fourteen billion dollars of health costs connected to global climate change, it should be obvious: America needs to prepare for a future in which these environmental disasters are both more frequent and more severe. We must act now to reduce those bills before they come due. A failure to do so is sensible only in a political environment where empty posturing trumps factuality one hundred percent of the time.

Warren Senders

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