23 Sep 2005

Climate change will kill 10,000 every year, says WHO official

9:15 am on 23 September 2005

A senior official in the World Health Organisation says the consequences of climate change will kill 10,000 every year.

The WHO health and environment councillor, Hisashi Ogawa, was speaking on the sidelines of a Western Pacific summit in the New Caledonian capital, Noumea.

Mr Ogawa says the human impact of climate change is becoming more and more significant.

He attributes this to the effects of heatwaves, floods, cyclones, and droughts, which lead to forest fires.

Mr Ogawa says these phenomena lead to poorer water quality, which in turn encourages disease.

He says between 1980 and 1990, the number of natural disasters in the Western Pacific increased by two per cent, and the number of victims went up by 35 per cent.

The WHO official says nations ought to be prepared for outbreaks of disease by stocking up on clean water.