Alumnus Giacomo di Capua Publishes Article on the Dangerous Absence of Health Talk at COP27
JCU alumnus and Class of 2021 Valedictorian Giacomo di Capua recently published an article called “The Dangerous Absence of Health Talk at COP27.” The article was published in the Diplomatic Courier, a global affairs media network that strives to “connect global publics to leaders in international affairs, diplomacy, social good, technology, business, and more.” Giacomo holds a dual degree in International Affairs and Business Administration from JCU and is currently a postgraduate researcher in Climate Health Economics at the Technological University Dublin – Ireland as well as a Research Intern at the United Nations Development Programme’s Crisis Bureau.
In his article, Giacomo discussed the importance of prioritizing health in climate change talks, specifically referencing the 27th Conference of the United Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP27). Extreme weather, air pollution, food and water insecurity, and the spread of infectious diseases have a significant impact on global health. Giacomo emphasized the importance of addressing climate change and health issues together. He explained that it is the role of global health organizations and healthcare professionals to be persistent advocates for the topic of health in climate policies and practices.
COP27 failed not only on halting fossil fuel proliferation but also on creating a discussion on climate finance for building resilience against climate-related events. Giacomo highlighted the disproportionate impacts that these events have on vulnerable communities such as indigenous peoples, emergency responders, women, children, and minority groups. Toward the end of his article, he listed the steps that can be taken to address these issues. He mentioned establishing an integrated governance system on climate health to capitalize on the growing political engagement with climate-related health and to include healthcare stakeholders in UNFCCC negotiations. Another solution would be to make climate-related health a priority in the COP agenda. What comes next is yet to be considered, however, it is important that these topics are brought up to raise awareness and find solutions to climate health problems.