Planetary Health

The Rockefeller Foundation-Lancet Commission on Planetary Health recognizes that human health and the health of our planet are inextricably linked, and that our civilization depends on human health, flourishing natural systems, and the wise stewardship of natural resources. With natural systems being degraded to an extent unprecedented in human history, both our health and that of our planet are in peril.

With this in mind, The Rockefeller Foundation and UNFCCC secretariat launched a new, three-year project that will shine a light on solutions to balance the need for both human health and a healthy planet starting in 2017.

Momentum for Change: Planetary Health

Momentum for Change: Planetary Health will recognize and showcase novel solutions by communities, cities, companies, NGOs and other institutions that balance the need for healthy communities with stewardship of natural ecosystems.

The Paris Climate Change Agreement explicitly links climate action with a healthier environment – from cleaner air and reduced risks of extreme heatwaves to keeping in check the spread of diseases.

One well-known impact of human behavior is the changing climate, which is altering the pattern of diseases, mortality, human settlements, food, water, and sanitation. Climate change brings increasing temperatures, rising seas, and more frequent incidence of severe storms. Known human impacts include flooding that can increase risks of water-related illnesses as well as vector-borne illnesses; an impact on food production – both in terms of increased drought cycles and diminished micronutrients in staple crops; and the pollutants that are tied to carbon emissions (and climate change) are also detrimental to human health. Today, there is greater mortality globally due to air pollution than because of HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

Planetary health is a new field, and one that needs ideas and solutions that span multiple sectors and disciplines to guide the creative stewardship of our planet to protect our own health. Momentum for Change: Planetary Health will show how communities are creating new ways use the planet’s resources wisely to protect their health – ways that can serve as a model for others.

Recognizing innovative climate actions

Momentum for Change: Planetary Health "Lighthouse Activities" demonstrate concrete results to address climate change. 

Please explore all Lighthouse Activities under Planetary Health pillar below.