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Climate Change: The Defining Health Challenge and Opportunity of the 21st Century: A Lancet Countdown Event

October 23, 2017

Climate change impacts human health directly and indirectly and no country is immune to its effects. The 2015 Lancet Commission concluded that anthropogenic climate change threatens to undermine the last 50 years of gains in public health. More hopefully, the Commission also agreed that a comprehensive response to climate change could be the greatest global health opportunity of the 21st century.

On October 31, the Lancet Countdown—an international research collaboration that tracks progress on the relationships between human health and climate change—will release its first annual Countdown Report tracking climate change and health indicators across five key domains. Our panelists will discuss the implications of the report and California’s role as the U.S. leader in climate change mitigation policy.

This talk is part of the Fall 2017 UC Berkeley School of Public Health Dean’s Speaker Series. It is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Climate and Energy Institute, the Public Health Institute, the Northern California Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, and the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program. Registration is recommended to attend. Click here for the webcast.

It will take place on November 1, from 5-7 p.m. at the David Brower Center, Goldman Theater and Wolf Gallery (2150 Allston Way, Berkeley, CA 94704).



Gina Solomon MD, MPH is the Deputy Secretary for Science and Health at the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) and a clinical professor of medicine at UCSF. At CalEPA, Dr. Solomon is the science advisor to the Secretary and works across California government on challenging and emerging science-policy issues. She was a senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council until 2012. She has served on multiple National Academies Committees, on the EPA Science Advisory Board, and the National Toxicology Program’s Board of Scientific Counselors.

Rachel Morello Frosch PhD, MPH is an environmental health scientist and professor in the School of Public Health and the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management at UC Berkeley. In collaboration with researchers, regulatory scientists, and community partners, she has developed scientifically valid and transparent tools for assessing the cumulative impacts of chemical and non-chemical stressors to improve regulatory decision-making and advance environmental justice. She is applying these methods to inform the implementation of climate change policies in California.

John Balmes MD is a professor of medicine at the UCSF and professor of environmental health sciences in the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. He is an attending physician in the UCSF Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine and the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. He directs the Northern California Center for Occupational and Environmental Health and the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program. He has been the Physician Member of the California Air Resources Board since 2008.

Hector De La Torre serves on the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as a gubernatorial appointee, where he focuses on goods movement, mitigation in impacted communities, and bringing the benefits of new technologies to these communities. De La Torre is the executive director of the Transamerica Center for Health Studies, a nonprofit focused on empowering consumers and employers to achieve the best value and protection from their health coverage. De La Torre served as a State Assemblymember for California’s 50th District from 2004-2010. Prior to that, he was Mayor and Councilmember in his hometown of South Gate.



Linda Rudolph MD, MPH directs the Center for Climate Change and Health at the Public Health Institute. She previously served as Deputy Director for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the California Department of Public Health, Health Officer and Public Health Director for the City of Berkeley, and Chief Medical Officer for Medi-Cal Managed Care. She was the founding chair of the California Health in All Policies Task Force, and launched the California Climate Action Team Public Health Work Group.