WHO warns Ethiopia over climate change risks

World Health Organization says climate change could cause health problems in Ethiopia

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Ethiopian soldier stands guard near a road which was nearly swept away near a city in eastern Ethiopia

The World Health Organization (WHO) is warning that climate change is threatening to exacerbate health problems in Ethiopia.

The WHO released details in its Climate and Health Country Profile 2015 on Tuesday.

“Increased temperatures, intense heat waves, more extreme rainfall, floods and landslides, are expected to intensify existing challenges of communicable diseases, food insecurity and poverty unless timely action is taken,” according to a WHO statement.

Ethiopia’s country profile is one of the first 15 country reports the WHO is releasing.

“Ethiopia is vulnerable to many of the effects of climate change, including increases in average temperature and changes in precipitation. This threatens health, livelihoods and the progress that Ethiopia has made in recent years,” the WHO added.

The international body claims that by 2030, almost 250,000 people in Ethiopia will be at risk from annual river floods.

WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan said: “Our planet is losing its capacity to sustain human life in good health”. She called for “strong, flexible and resilient health systems” as a defense against the impact of climate change.