Climate change is a health emergency. The World Health Organization has estimated that already over 150,000 people die each year as a result of climate change through mechanisms such as increased extreme weather events, crop failures, famine and spread of infectious diseases1. Climate change has been identified by the Lancet and University College London as "the biggest global health threat of the 21st century"2 and the Lancet more recently stated that "tackling climate change could be the greatest global health opportunity of the 21st century"3.
Climate change and its health impacts are ultimately driven by greenhouse gas emissions. We can and must advocate for all levels of government to set strong greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets in order to protect health.
At the end of January 2017, the Victorian Government set an emissions reduction target for the state of 15-20% below 2005 levels by the year 20204,5.
We believe the upper end of this range is the absolute minimum that our Government should be aiming for in order to help protect us and people around the world from climate change, so we've drafted an email that you can send to the Premier thanking him for his leadership so far and asking the Government to adopt this target as a minimum. However, you can always customise your email to ask the Premier for a different emissions reduction target if you like.