Speaker to address climate change and its effect on human health

Wendy Ring will speak at 5:30 p.m., Sept. 11 in the Hardin Hall auditorium.
Wendy Ring will speak at 5:30 p.m., Sept. 11 in the Hardin Hall auditorium.

Global warming and climate change may be most noticeable through the weather or failed crops, but what about its effects on human health?

On Sept. 11, Wendy Ring will answer that question and introduce students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the public to an overview of the impact of climate change on individual and community health. The event will be held in Hardin Hall at 5:30 p.m.

At the event, Ring will provide a data-driven discussion of health problems associated with the climate, ranging from infectious diseases, to environmental quality, to mental health. She will also discuss the policy implications of these challenges.

"What is really fascinating about her campaign is she is framing climate change into a health perspective which is relevant to everyone," said Melanie Straessle of Physicians for Social Responsibility, one of the sponsors of Ring’s discussion. "She is so passionate about her work and wants to reach out to audiences that are the most vulnerable."

The Yale- and Columbia-trained doctor earned her M.D. and a Master’s Degree in Public Health and was the Medical Director of a community health center in California for more than 20 years. Ring has also been recognized by Congress, the California legislature and the American Medical Association for her work in improving access to care for the underserved and was once named America’s Best Healer by Reader’s Digest.

Currently, Ring is touring the nation as part of a national engagement effort on climate change and health organized by Physicians for Social Responsibility and Climate911.

The event at UNL is co-sponsored by the National Drought Mitigation Center, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Climate911, the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing, the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Public Health, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln School of Natural Resources, the University of Nebraska College of Arts and Sciences through the Thomas C. Sorensen Endowment, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UNL and the University of Nebraska Public Policy Center.

Ring will speak from 5:30 to 7 p.m., Sept. 11 in the Hardin Hall auditorium (Room 107).

— Haley Dover, University Communications