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An Editor’s Invitation: Code Red–Our Changing Climate

Dear Pulse readers,
Early this past month, more than 200 medical journals collaborated in publishing an editorial that cited a rise in global temperatures as the “greatest threat to global public health.” It called on governments to cooperate and to combat climate change with the same urgency and vigor that they’ve used to fight COVID.
Pulse would like to lend our voices–yours and mine–to this critical conversation.

Four weeks ago, climate change paid a visit to New York in the form of Hurricane Ida, dumping a historic eight inches of rain in Central Park, three of those inches in just one hour.
The flooding was lethal. Some people died in their submerged cars. Others drowned trying to swim to safety.
The interior of the house of worship I attend got three feet of water. The congregation has been forced to leave our building, possibly never to return: The next flood may be even worse.
Something is amiss. It’s a bad dream come to life–a dream where the house is on fire, and the fire department isn’t answering the phone.
What do you do when the prognosis is grave and the best options seem out of reach?
You worry.
I worry about my daughters, whose future depends upon a habitable planet. I worry about the earth’s shrinking biodiversity.
I worry that our leaders are not paying enough attention. I worry that the financial incentive to do nothing–an incentive felt by certain powerful commercial interests–seems to be prevailing over the common good.
I worry that time is running out–that instead of making up lost ground, we’re slipping further behind.
I try not to despair, as despair invites inaction. So my heart holds out hope, and I lend my support to causes and candidates who will make a difference.
I take personal steps to be a more responsible steward of this planet. I’ve stopped driving to work and have been walking the mile to the train that takes me to our family health center.
At the same time, I hear the clock ticking. My eyes are on the second hand.
I want to look away. I mustn’t look away.
What about you? How have you been impacted by climate change?
October’s More Voices theme is Code Red: Our Changing Climate. Send us your lived experience. No opinion pieces, please. But please share what climate change is like for you personally. And while you’re at it, take a look at last month’s theme, Unvaccinated.
For more details, visit More Voices FAQs–or go directly to the More Voices Submission Form.
Remember, your health-related story should be 40-400 words. And no poetry, please.
We look forward to hearing from you.
With warm regards,
Paul Gross


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