Climate change and health are inextricably linked, and it is people in rural, regional and remote Australia who are hit the hardest.
That’s the message that the National Rural Health Alliance and a range of expert speakers will deliver to MPs at a Parliamentary Friends of Rural and Remote Health breakfast.
Speakers at the breakfast include Professor Anthony Capon, the Director of Monash University’s Sustainable Development Institute and former Professor of Planetary Health at the University of Sydney; Dr Arnagretta Hunter, cardiologist, ANU lecturer and member of Doctors for the Environment and the Climate and Health Alliance; and Professor Jenny May, rural GP and Director of the University of Newcastle Department of Rural Health.
National Rural Health Alliance Chair Ms Tanya Lehmann and CEO Dr Gabrielle O’Kane will also speak to the Alliance’s position statement on climate change and rural health.
“When it comes to the health and wellbeing of rural communities, we can’t ignore the realities of climate change,” said Dr O’Kane.
“We’re thrilled to be able to bring to Parliament so many engaging speakers with expertise in climate and health as well as those who can speak about the impact of extreme weather events on rural communities.
“The impacts of climate change on people in rural areas are significant and diverse. There’s the obvious fact that rural Australia is more susceptible to extreme weather events, but then there’s the impact on things like food security as well as water quality and availability.
“And let’s not forget that climate change is a risk multiplier and can worsen already substantial social and health inequities between those in rural communities and their city counterparts.
“More broadly, the Parliamentary Friendship Group is a great forum for our 44 member bodies to engage directly with parliamentarians, to discuss ways that we can all work together to improve rural health.”
Speakers at this breakfast included:
Ms Tanya Lehmann – Chair, National Rural Health Alliance
Professor Anthony Capon – Director, Monash Sustainable Development Institute
Professor Jenny May – Rural GP; Director, University of Newcastle Department of Rural Health
Dr Arnagretta Hunter – Physician; Cardiologist; Clinical Senior Lecturer, ANU Medical School
Members of the second Parliamentary Friends of Rural and Remote Health Group
Mrs Bridget Archer MP, Member for Bass
Senator Tim Ayres, Senator for New South Wales
Hon Chris Bowen MP, Member for McMahon
Mr Russell Broadbent MP, Member for Monash
Hon Linda Burney MP, Member for Canterbury
Senator Anthony Chisholm, Senator for Queensland
Mr George Christensen MP, Member for Dawson
Hon Jason Clare MP, Member for Blaxland
Senator the Hon Richard Colbeck, Senator for Tasmania
Senator Perin Davey, Senator for New South Wales
Senator Patrick Dodson, Senator for Western Australia
Hon Mark Dreyfus MP, Member for Isaacs
Hon Warren Entsch MP, Member for Leichhardt
Senator the Hon David Fawcett, Senator for South Australia
Dr Mike Freelander MP, Member for Macarthur
Hon Dr David Gillespie MP, Member for Lyne
Mr Luke Gosling MP, Member for Solomon
Dr Helen Haines MP, Member for Indi
Ms Ged Kearney MP, Member for Cooper
Hon Nola Marino MP, Member for Forrest
Ms Emma McBride MP, Member for Dobell
Senator Susan McDonald, Senator for Queensland
Hon Dr John McVeigh MP, Member for Groom
Mr Brian Mitchell MP, Member for Lyons
Mr Ken O'Dowd MP, Member for Flynn
Senator Deborah O'Neill, Senator for New South Wales
Mr Tony Pasin MP, Member for Barker
Senator Louise Pratt, Senator for Western Australia
Mr Rowan Ramsay MP, Member for Grey
Senator Janet Rice, Senator for Victoria
Senator Paul Scarr, Senator for Queensland
Ms Rebekha Sharkie MP, Member for Mayo
Senator Marielle Smith, Senator for South Australia
Hon Warren Snowdon MP, Member for Lingiari
Senator Amanda Stoker, Senator for Queensland
Dr Anne Webster MP, Member for Mallee