Environmental Change and Emerging Diseases

Understanding how environmental changes are directly and indirectly affecting the emergence and spread of disease has assumed global importance.

Research event, Webinar
28 October 2020 — 3:00PM TO 4:00PM

There is growing awareness that deforestation and land-use conversion, urbanization, human migration, international commerce, and climate change are having significant impacts on human health, but their impact on increasing infectious disease risks has only become more evident with the coronavirus pandemic.

With climate change, and environmental change more generally, disrupting ecologies, and people interacting with wildlife in new ways, it creates the conditions for new diseases to emerge: a better understanding of the health dimensions of environmental change will be critical to managing pandemic risks in future. 

Our event will examine the relationship between environmental change and disease, how these linkages have manifested in historical outbreaks and in the coronavirus pandemic, and the role of environmental policies in minimizing the risk of future emerging diseases.  What can be done to ensure equitable action? What can we learn from our responses to previous pandemics? And will the growing recognition of the diverse risks arising from climate change motivate more climate action?

This event will launch the Energy, Environment and Resources (EER) Programme’s Environment and Society Discussion Series. This series aims to provide a platform to promote interdisciplinary knowledge sharing and policy dialogue to mitigate and adapt to the impacts that climate change, biodiversity loss and natural resource depletion are having on people and communities globally, and on geopolitics, security and international development.

Sign up to find out about more events in this series here


Professor Dame Theresa Marteau DBE, Director, Behaviour and Health Research Unit, University of Cambridge
Daniel R. Brooks, Senior Research Associate, Harold W. Manter Laboratory of Parasitology, University of Nebraska State Museum
Moderator: Professor Tim Benton, Director, Energy, Environment and Resources Programme, Chatham House

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