News Pouch: 20 January 2020

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Pandemic Threats and Health Emergencies

News Pouch: 20 January 2020

Welcome to this issue of the newsletter where we highlight latest research and policy news and literature on health emergencies preparedness and response, tagged by thematic area.

Please send your feedback, articles and reports, or questions you would like to share to Dr. Chadia Wannous via email  

Wishing you useful reading!

  • Spotlight: Ebola Outbreak Situation
  • Spotlight: nCOV outbreak in China
  • Updates and News on Outbreaks
    • Priority Infectious Diseases
      • Influenza
      •  VBD, and more
  • One Health
    • Biodiversity and ecosystem
    • Food Security and Safety
    • AMR
    • Health in Emergencies and Disasters
    • Health and Climate Change
    • Urban Health
    • Migration Health
    • Global Health
    • Contact us


    Ebola Outbreak Situation

    Ebola virus disease – Democratic Republic of the Congo
    Disease outbreak news: Update 16 January 2020
    As of 14 January, a total of 3406 EVD cases were reported, including 3288 confirmed and 118 probable cases, of which 2236 cases died (overall case fatality ratio 66%) (Table 1). Of the total confirmed and probable cases, 56% (n=1910) were female, 28% (n=960) were children aged less than 18 years, and 169 (5% of all reported cases) were health care workers.
    In the coming week, there will be nine health zones in North Kivu and Ituri Provinces that will have contacts in or entering their high-risk period (seven to 13 days after last exposure to the virus). In Kalunguta Health Zone, North Kivu Province, where five individuals were confirmed with EVD from 24 to 28 December 2019, all 153 contacts have cleared their 21-day follow-up, with no new cases reported. In Mambasa Health Zone, Ituri Province, where four new cases were reported from 4 to 5 January 2020, more than 400 followed contacts are nearing the end of their high-risk period.
    It has been more than 17 months since the outbreak was first declared on 1 August 2018. The number of cases reported per week is lower than the period from March to September 2019 (Figure 1). However, there are several health areas which are difficult to reach due to insecurity, including Mandima Health Zone, where there are rumours of several community deaths in Lwemba Health Area. Continued response efforts in active health zones, including in insecure areas, and preventing reintroduction of the disease into health zones with dense populations which have previously been cleared are crucial to ending ongoing transmission.

    Cases traced to Mabalako still fueling DRC Ebola outbreak
    More »
    Jan 14 WHO situation report
    WHO Ebola dashboard
    Jan 14 CMRE report
    2 DRC Red Cross volunteers were seriously injured in an attack as they assisted in the safe burial of a suspected Ebola victim.

    Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo: January crisis update

    In Congo’s Ebola zone, misinformation persists even as cases slow
    ‘A rumour can take on a life of its own very, very quickly.’
    According to field surveys conducted by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), many in the region are still sceptical about the disease and distrustful of the response.

    How war and misinformation are complicating the DRC’s Ebola battle

    Profectus vaccine shown safe in phase 1 trial
    A phase 1 trial of Profectus BioSciences' second-generation VSV VesiculoVax-vectored Ebola vaccine (rVSVN4CT1-EBOVGP1) demonstrated a solid immune response and good safety profile, according to a new study published yesterday in The Lancet Infectious Diseases. Long-term data on the immunogenicity of the Profectus vaccine are needed.
    Jan 14 Lancet Infect Dis study
    Jan 14 Lancet Infect Dis commentary
    Apr 8, 2015, CIDRAP News story "Second-generation Ebola vaccines show promise in animal study"

    Why an Ebola Vaccine Is Not Enough

    8,000 vaccinated against Ebola in western Rwanda

    The terror of catching Ebola inside a government superbug lab

    Ebola and Cholera Epidemics: An ALNAP Lessons Paper

    PREVAC-UP to evaluate safety of three Ebola vaccines five years post-vaccination
    The study will assess several factors within these treatments: their long-term safety, the durability of immune responses to them, and the effect of other infections on the immune response to vaccination. Vaccines will be evaluated by integrative statistical analysis of the immune response.

    Specialist technique used to study drugs completed for first time during Ebola outbreak
    Although treatment with TKM-130803 did not appear to improve survival, possibly because the patients presented with advanced disease, the research team were able to use pharmacokinetic analyses to gain important new insights.
    Significant findings were that the amount of virus (the 'viral load') was not significantly different in patients who lived or died, and that the concentration of drug was higher in those who died than in those who survived.
    The cost of insecurity: from flare-up to control of a major Ebola virus disease hotspot during the outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2019 separator commenting unavailable
    Since April 2018, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been facing its largest Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak to date, located in the eastern provinces of North Kivu and Ituri. The main hotspot of the epidemic, the Butembo coordination hub, has faced unprecedented violence targeting the response to EVD, which culminated in the destruction of the two EVD treatment centres in February 2019. In this short paper, we evaluate the likely impact of these attacks in terms of added transmissibility and cases, and show how the implementation of a new intervention strategy was followed by the control of the hotspot.

    Priority Diseases

    China nCOV outbreak 

    Wuhan nCoV outbreak quadruples, spreads within China
    A surge in the last past 2 days lifts the outbreak total to 198, with 1 new case in Shenzhen.
    More »
    WHO says new China coronavirus could spread, warns hospitals worldwide
    There may have been limited human-to-human transmission of a new coronavirus in China within families, and it is possible there could be a wider outbreak, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday.
    WHO declines to name new pneumonia after 'China' or 'Wuhan'
    After the official name for the new coronavirus that originates in Wuhan, China, was revealed on Monday (Jan. 13), many international experts were surprised to find that neither of the two places were included in the title of the disease.
    Pneumonia of Unknown Etiology in Wuhan, China: Potential for International Spread Via Commercial Air Travel  
    There is currently an outbreak of a pneumonia of unknown etiology in Wuhan, China. While there are still several unanswered questions, we evaluate the potential for international dissemination of this disease via commercial air travel should the outbreak continue.
    Wuhan has reported a 2nd death among the city's new CoV2019 cases.
    The new death was a 69 yo man. To date there are 43 known cases (41 in Wuhan, 1 in Thailand, 1 in Japan). Though many of the infections are mild, 2 deaths out of 43 cases is not reassuring.

    Second family cluster found in Wuhan novel coronavirus outbreak
    New details in the outbreak emerge, including potential human-to-human spread.
    More »

    Report: Thailand's coronavirus patient didn't visit outbreak market
    More »

    As Thailand notes 2nd nCoV case, CDC begins airport screening
    Screening will begin at airports in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.
    More »
    Japan confirmed its first case of the pneumonia-like coronavirus
    that has sickened dozens in Wuhan, China; the Chinese national had visited Wuhan but not the seafood market linked to the outbreak.
    Japan Times
    Estimating the potential total number of novel Coronavirus cases in Wuhan City, China
    We estimate that a total of 1,723 cases of 2019-nCoV in Wuhan City (95% CI: 427 – 4,471) had onset of symptoms by 12th January 2020 (the last reported onset date of any case).
    German researchers develop 1st test for new virus from China
    German researchers said Thursday they have developed the first diagnostic test for a new virus that has emerged in central China.
    Ten Recommendations for Supporting Open Pathogen Genomic Analysis in Public Health Settings
    Public health agencies are increasingly using pathogen whole genome sequencing (WGS) to support surveillance and epidemiologic investigations. As access to WGS has grown, greater amounts of molecular data have helped improve our ability to detect outbreaks, investigate transmission chains, and explore large-scale population dynamics, such as the spread of antibiotic resistance. However, the wide adoption of WGS also poses challenges due to the amount of data generated and the need to transform raw data prior to analysis.
    Whooping cough is evolving to outsmart vaccines
    According to a study published in Vaccine, leading to calls for a new formula as Australia faces a surprise resurgence of the disease.
    Medical Xpress
    Public-private cooperation for pandemic preparedness and response: A Call to Action
    The Event 201 pandemic exercise, conducted on October 18, 2019, vividly demonstrated a number of important gaps in pandemic preparedness as well as some of the elements of the solutions between the public and private sectors that will be needed to fill them.
    Using text mining to track outbreak trends in global surveillance of emerging diseases: ProMED-mail
    ProMED-mail (Program for Monitoring Emerging Disease, also abbreviated ProMED) is an international disease outbreak monitoring and early warning system. Every year, users contribute thousands of reports that include reference to infectious diseases and toxins, and these reports are then distributed to all subscribers of ProMED. However, the corpus of reports has not been well studied so far. Thus, we propose to apply text mining methods to derive information pertinent to the characterisation of the stage of an epidemic outbreak from the reports.
    Glacier ice archives fifteen-thousand-year-old viruses
    While glacier ice cores provide climate information over tens to hundreds of thousands of years, study of microbes is challenged by ultra-low-biomass conditions, and virtually nothing is known about co-occurring viruses. Here we establish ultra-clean microbial and viral sampling procedures and apply them to two ice cores from the Guliya ice cap (northwestern Tibetan Plateau, China) to study these archived communities.
    A brief history of human disease genetics
    A primary goal of human genetics is to identify DNA sequence variants that influence biomedical traits, particularly those related to the onset and progression of human disease. Over the past 25 years, progress in realizing this objective has been transformed by advances in technology, foundational genomic resources and analytical tools, and by access to vast amounts of genotype and phenotype data.


    Survey: Millennials least likely to get flu vaccine
    Fifty-five percent of millennials surveyed said they have not gotten a flu shot, with 33% saying they do not intend to. Sixty-one percent of millennials surveyed said they at least partially agreed with some of the anti-vaccine rhetoric. To compare, only 42% of baby boomers said they agreed with any anti-vaccine statements.
    Jan 16 AAFP press release
    Flu and Fitbit
    Trends in anonymized user data may help health officials respond more quickly to outbreaks, according to research in The Lancet Digital Health.
    MedPage Today
    Harnessing wearable device data to improve state-level real-time surveillance of influenza-like illness in the USA: a population-based study
    Acute infections can cause an individual to have an elevated resting heart rate (RHR) and change their routine daily activities due to the physiological response to the inflammatory insult. Consequently, we aimed to evaluate if population trends of seasonal respiratory infections, such as influenza, could be identified through wearable sensors that collect RHR and sleep data.
    Vector-Borne Diseases (VBD)

    Nigeria announces three new laboratories for yellow fever, measles and rubella

    Not Perfect, But Worth a Shot
    After 3 decades of research, Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi are piloting the first malaria vaccine in babies. The vaccine is only about 40% effective, but Mosquirix is being given a shot anyway amid rising resistance to treatment and stalling progress against the disease.
    Mosquirix (also known by its scientific name, RTS,S) was WHO-approved in 2015, but this pilot program will confirm whether it should be rolled out widely.
    It’s too early to know if it’s working, but one Malawi clinic clocked just 40 malaria cases in the first 5 months of the program compared to 78 in the same period of 2018.

    Genetically engineered mosquitoes resist spreading any form of dengue
    Recover from dengue once, and you’re not necessarily free and clear. The mosquito-borne disease marked by fever, rash, and debilitating pain results from any of four genetically distinct versions of the dengue virus.
    African swine fever ten years on: the lessons learned and the way forward

    Three African countries halt polio outbreaks
    Kenya, Mozambique and Niger have curbed polio outbreaks that erupted in different episodes over the past 24 months, allowing them to regain their polio-free status, World Health Organization (WHO) announced.

    Pakistan, African nations, Philippines report more polio cases
    Seven countries have reported more polio cases, according to the latest weekly update today from the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI).
    Pakistan reported seven more wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) cases, which were from Sindh, Punjab, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces. Five African countries reported more cVDPV2 cases: Angola (2), Benin (1), Central African Republic (2), Ghana (1), and Togo (1). The cases in Benin, Ghana, and Togo are linked to the outbreak in Nigeria's Jigwa state.
    Finally, the Philippines reported 2 more cVDPV2 cases, bringing its total for 2019 to 11. Both are from the Autonomous Region in Muslim Minado provinces.
    Jan 17 GPEI weekly report

    Unprecedented outbreak of childhood HIV in Pakistan
    The Ratodero outbreak represents a 54% increase in paediatric HIV diagnoses over the past 13 years according to a new study. The first scientific report on the outbreak appears to confirm transmission was mostly as a result of healthcare providers using contaminated needles and blood products.
    Read more →
    Zimbabwe's culture of spousal inheritance is a key factor in the spread of HIV/AIDS;Activists are fighting the practice of women being “inherited like property” after their husband dies.
    Natural selection favoring more transmissible HIV detected in United States molecular transmission network
    HIV molecular epidemiology can identify clusters of individuals with elevated rates of HIV transmission. These variable transmission rates are primarily driven by host risk behavior; however, the effect of viral traits on variable transmission rates is poorly understood.

    Research and innovations as key drivers to end tuberculosis in the WHO European Region by 2030
    Health research is crucial to the efforts being made to achieving universal health coverage of the Sustainable Development Goals, and to ensure equitable access to health services and financial risk protection for people in all settings across the life course. Rigorously conducted health research can lead to new knowledge, technologies and strategies, allowing health care interventions and systems to be scaled up with the aim of achieving universal health coverage – in other words, research for health towards health for all. 
    Continue reading

    One Health  

    More than 3 billion animals imported into US from 2000 to 2014
    EcoHealth Alliance, a nonprofit working at the intersection of animal, environmental, and human health, published a 15-year database on US animal imports, which shows the United States imported more than 3.2 billion live animals between 2000 and 2014. the most common reasons for importation listed within the given 15-year period were the pet trade, scientific research, and the fashion industry.
    Jan 16 EcoHealth Alliance press release
    Jan 16 Scientific Data study

    Webinar: One Health Advocacy: Education and Policy in Action
    Sun, Feb 9, 2020 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM CET
    Join the International Student One Health Alliance as we learn from Drs. Deborah Thomson and George Lueddeke about advocating for One Health through education and policy.
    Link to 'Survival':
    Register here  
    Webinar: “The Added Value of Anthropology for Integrated Control of Neglected Zoonotic Diseases in the One Health Movement”
     Dr. Séverine Thys. Tuesday January 21 2020. 10:00 am - 11:00 am EST (UTC-5)
    Dr. Thys will discuss the added value of conducting a socio-anthropological study for improving the understanding of the barriers faced to control Neglected Zoonotic Diseases (NZDs). In addition to a practical and reflexive description of the interdisciplinary approach used, she will describe the socio-cultural drivers of the results in three case-studies: Cystic echinococcosis in Morocco; Taenia solium Taeniasis/cysticercosis in Zambia; and Rabies in South Africa. The presentation will conclude with a general discussion through a cross-case analysis and general recommendations.
    Register Now

    Study raises possibility of sexual spread of CWD in deer
    "We know almost nothing about sexual transmission and prion diseases," one expert says.
    More »

    Biodiversity and Ecosystem

    Irreplaceable trees saved from Australia fire
    An extremely rare species of tree that has survived since the dinosaurs has been saved from bushfires in Australia. The last-remaining grove of wild Wollemia nobilis trees was protected by specialist firefighters, who dropped water and fire retardant from the air and set up an irrigation system to soak the ground. The location of the grove in Wollemi National Park is kept secret to protect it from tourists.
    The Sydney Morning Herald | 4 min read

    One of world’s largest fish has gone extinct
    The Chinese paddlefish (Psephurus gladius), a freshwater fish that could grow up to 7 metres long, is gone forever. The giant of the Yangtze River used its long sword-like snout, packed with electricity-sensing cells, to track its prey. The Gezhouba Dam cut off the paddlefish from its only spawning grounds upstream in 1981, and researchers estimate that the fish had become functionally extinct, without enough members to maintain the population, by 1993. “This is the first of these very large freshwater fish to go and many are at risk,” says fish biologist Zeb Hogan.
    National Geographic | 7 min read
    Reference: Science of The Total Environment paper
    Amazon deforestation jumped 85% in 2019
    Food Safety and Security

    Q&A: The impact on climate denial on food security

    Meat isn’t always the biggest driver of dietary carbon emissions
    A case study of Japan reveals that international dietary recommendations to reduce meat consumption won't always results in lower emissions.
    Read More
    The meat wars: A backlash is occurring on the backlash to meat dietary recommendations published late last year

    Diets are changing around the world
    Global food supply has changed dramatically over the last fifty years. South Korea, China and Taiwan have experienced the largest changes, while sub-Saharan Africa has showed the least change, with a lack of diverse food supply available. This new study could inform policies for improving population health, and environmental impact.
    Read more →

    Locusts swarm into Kenya as UN warns of 'extreme danger' to food supply
    The UN has warned of a “significant and extremely dangerous” escalation in the number of desert locusts descending on Kenya, as the government strives to contain the threat before it reaches the country’s food-producing regions in country still reeling from droughts and floods
    Locust plagues occur intermittently in the Horn of Africa, but this invasion is the worst in 25 years, according to the FAO. Originating at the India-Pakistan border, the insects migrated into Somalia and Ethiopia and destroyed nearly 71,000 hectares of farmland in the two countries. And the threat is not over yet. Swarms have laid eggs in northern Somalia that are now hatching and may migrate again, in even larger numbers

    Participatory management strengthens governance, management and productivity of rangelands
    The Skyrocketting Need for Speed: Partnering to Develop Rapid Diagnostic Tests That Protect Patients From Antibiotic Resistant Infections During Disasters and Every Day. 
    In a public health emergency, the need for speed really skyrockets. Antimicrobial resistance threatens health security because every health threat – whether biological, chemical, radiological, or pandemic – leads to secondary bacterial infections that are increasingly antibiotic resistant, and many of the biological threats our nation faces can be genetically engineered to be antimicrobial resistant. To make matters worse without effective therapies, these infections can rapidly lead to sepsis, the body’s extreme, even life-threatening, response to an infection.

    Fight against antibiotic crisis stymied by lack of R&D spend
    Investment in late-stage R&D is urgently needed to combat antimicrobial resistance, industry alliance warns
    Availability, prices and affordability of selected antibiotics and medicines against non-communicable diseases in western Cameroon and northeast DR Congo.
    WHO 2019: Antibacterial agents in preclinical development: an open access database.
    This is the World Health Organization’s first comprehensive overview of the preclinical antibacterial pipeline to date based on publicly available data on each included project. This report and the respective WHO database capture 252 antibacterial agents in development targeting the pathogens on the WHO priority pathogens list (Annex I), Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Clostridioides difficile. The preclinical pipeline is dynamic and scientifically diverse, with agents being developed in many parts of the world to prevent and treat drug-resistant bacterial infections.
    WHO. 2019 Antibacterial agents in clinical development: An analysis of the antibacterial clinical development pipeline.
    This report is the World Health Organization’s (WHO) third annual review of the clinical antibacterial pipeline to analyse how the pipeline responds to the WHO priority pathogens list. This report covers direct-acting small molecules and biological agents that are in development worldwide. It assesses to what extent the pipeline addresses the WHO priority pathogens, Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Clostridioides difficile and to what extent the antibacterial agents are innovative. This report is part of the WHO’s efforts in global research and development (R&D) priority setting to contain antimicrobial resistance.
    Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
    Special Issue: Antimicrobial Therapeutics Reviews
    The eighth installment of this review series presents five reviews in various areas of antimicrobial biology and medicine.
    Scientists patented a new probiotic drink that may help combat drug-resistant bacteria
    by preventing them from replicating, according to research published in PLOS One.
    Health Europa
    •    From Feb 24 to Feb 26 in Thailand, the World Health Organization will convene its first global technical partnership meeting on antimicrobial stewardship, centering discussions on the theme of "Fostering Partnerships and Capacity on Antimicrobial Stewardship" in low- and middle-income countries. Toolkit and draft agenda available for download.
    •    Webinar: "Testing for the potential of the emergence of antimicrobial resistance," Jan 21 2020 hosted by the Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership.
    •    Free online course (e-Bug teaching resource) from Public Health England and the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy for teachers and others who work with young people to learn how to provide education on infectious diseases, AMR, and appropriate antibiotic use.
    •    Podcast. On the TopMedTalk Perioperative Enhancement Team podcast, Alison Holmes, MD, MPH, MA, discusses ways in which surgical practices and infection control pathways can be adjusted to work in conjunction with antimicrobial stewardship

    Stewardship / Resistance Scan for Jan 15, 2020

    • Illegal antibiotic sales in China
    • Antibiotic use in Vietnam

    More »

    Stewardship / Resistance Scan for Jan 17, 2020

    • Suboptimal antibiotics in children's hospitals
    • Discordant antibiotics for kids' UTIs
    • Ceftazidime-avibactam resistance

    More »

    Emergencies and Disasters

    Hundreds dead as Yemen flu outbreak spreads
    Health ministry in Yemen is introducing measures to combat the spread of the H1N1 flu strain across several governorates, only months after declaring an emergency state over outbreaks of dengue and malaria. According to a report released by the ministry, the virus has killed 271 people out of 6,945 suspected of contracting the infection since October 2019.

    As flood waters recede, Jakarta residents file lawsuit against governor
    More than 200 Jakarta residents have filed a lawsuit against the governor of Indonesia's capital for failing to act during severe flooding that killed at least 60 and displaced some 175,000 people in late 2019.

    Canada: The fallout from a false nuclear alarm
    The WHO AFRO Emergency Operations (EMO) annual report 2018
    The WHO AFRO Emergency Operations (EMO) programme area aims at strengthening Regional Office capacity to assist  Member States in dealing promptly and effectively with major public health crises, including the impact of humanitarian ones.
    AFRO response strengthening strategies include:

    • Building a strong WHO/AFRO Rapid Response Team, backed by well-trained staff at AFRO and WHO country offices to perform the Incident Management System (IMS) functions
    • Supporting countries (Member States) and health-related organizations in the region, to set up Emergency Medical Teams, which will support response in the respective countries and the region
    • Establishing partnership in WHO response areas for a joint effective response under the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN)

    Download Full Report
    Evaluation of future flood risk in Asian megacities: A case study of Jakarta
    The purpose of this research is to assess the future flood risk in rapidly urbanizing cities under climate change. A flood inundation model and a flood damage costs model were employed to project the future flood risk. Were employed the combinations of eight global climate models (GCMs) and three representative concentration pathways (RCPs) for precipitation to represent the climate change.
    Future of the Strategic Approach on International Chemicals Management to be Decided in 2020
    The negotiations recognize the added value of SAICM’s current voluntary, multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder approach to mobilize actors. 
    Environmental Hazards Feature in 2020 Global Risk Report
    The top five risks by likelihood over the next 10 years include extreme weather events and failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation. 
    [Global Risk Report Executive Summary]
    [Publication: Global Risk Report 2020]
    Bushfires expose weaknesses in Australia's health system
    The Lancet
    80% of the Blue Mountains and 50% of Gondwana rainforests burn in bushfires
    Emergency Response Co-ordination Centre Map of the Australian bushfires
    Avalanches and snow wreak havoc in Pakistan, leaving 73 dead

    Climate Change and Health

    2019 second hottest year on record, UN confirms
    Last year was the second warmest year on record, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) confirmed on Wednesday.

    2019 Was a Record Year for Ocean Temperatures, Data Show
    We might not think about heat in the ocean as much as we think about surface temperatures. An indicator of what’s happening roughly two meters above the earth’s surface and two meters below sea level, surface temperature data tends to reflect what most people feel in their day-to-day lives. But the two are interconnected, and the oceans are working very hard right now. To date, they’ve absorbed roughly 93 percent of the heat associated with human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. That’s saved us from more severe surface warming.

    The female face of Southern Africa’s climate crisis
    Women and girls are disproportionately affected by climate change. We must be relentless in our collective fight against inequality and patriarchy.

    Malawi heatwaves threaten tea yields and livelihoods
    Added to the Using Climate Information Theme by Beth Mackay and Katharine Vincent
    The recent heatwave in Malawi has led to consecutive days with very high temperatures. This is exactly the scenario that tea growers fear. The CI4Tea project aims to support tea farmers to adapt.
    Read the complete Case Study on weADAPT
    Mix of stress and air pollution may lead to cognitive difficulties in children
    Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health via Science Daily
    How climate change could change the way we die
    A new study predicts more deaths from injuries in a warmer world.
    The number of excess deaths for 2 °C of warming, 2,135, represents 1% of all deaths from injuries in 2017. California, Texas, and Florida are likely to have the largest number of these increased deaths. The researchers analyzed data on injuries from road traffic accidents and other forms of transport, falls, drowning, assault, and suicide, which together account for about three-quarters of deaths from injuries in the United States. They found that the largest number of excess deaths is likely to be from traffic accidents, followed by suicide. The largest proportional increase is projected for drowning, while the smallest proportional increases are projected for assault and suicide. “Of the excess deaths, 84% would occur in males and 16% in females,” the researchers write. “Of all male excess deaths, 92% would occur in those aged 15–64 years, who have higher rates of deaths from transport and suicide.”

    Watch the adaptation blind spot- Indirect impacts in Asia's LDCs

    Gender Analysis and NDCs: Short Guidance for Government Stakeholders

    These Are the Biggest Climate Questions for the New Decade
    The 2010s brought major climate science advances, but researchers still want to pin down estimates of Arctic melt and sea-level rise
    Germany agrees pay-out to states and companies in coal phase-out deal
    Cash to switch
    The EU Commission has put money where its mouth is and unveiled a €100bn plan to put flesh on the bone of its Green Deal. The money, which includes a €7.5bn Just Transition Mechanism fund, is designed to help communities across Europe move away from fossil-fuel intensive industries. Poland is on track to be the fund’s largest recipient, with an allocated €2bn – a large carrot for Warsaw to back the union’s carbon neutrality goal by 2050. Under the plans, Germany would receive the second biggest trunk of cash as Angela Merkel’s government agreed a €40bn coal phase-out deal with the country’s coal-producing regions.

    Urban Health

    Salty water in Bangkok is new 'reality' as sea pushes farther inland

    Citizens Reclaim Detroit
    In Detroit’s most vulnerable communities, the fallout from decades of environmental injustice can be found in toxic air pollution, lead-laced soil, and dilapidated infrastructure. 
    “We’re actually Dr. Frankenstein’s laboratory in Michigan,” says Detroit environmental activist Vince Martin. “How you just going to sit here using these people as guinea pigs?”
    Part of a Medium series, this article documents undaunted activists who are committed to finding new ways to tackle longstanding city problems: a nonprofit that helps residents pay water shutoff bills, pollutant maps that assign neighborhoods environmental justice scores, and a successful campaign to close an incinerator. 

    The Guardian

    Amsterdam tests green tram stops
    If the tests are successful, more locations could be covered with greenery

    Mayors, unite for the Trees in Cities Challenge
    Citizens can participate too by urging local governments to plant more trees

    Finnish cities recycled a record amount of plastics in 2019
    In Vantaa recycling has increased more than 180%

    22 new sensor stations measure air pollution in Sofia
    Sofia Municipality partners with Thessaloniki, Nicosia, Tirana and Skopje on EU funded project AIRTHINGS

    Migration Health

    Global migration by the numbers: who migrates, where they go and why 
     World Migration Report 2020

    Global Health

    Monitoring the health-related Sustainable Development Goals: lessons learned and recommendations for improved measurement
    Accountable Communities for Health for Children and Families: Approaches for Catalyzing and Accelerating Success
    Protecting Health Care Workers from Transmissible Airborne Diseases: Challenges and Opportunities 
    Health care workers face serious risks to their own health and safety during both routine and emergency work. Airborne transmissible diseases—pathogens that spread through the air or through droplets—are a silent, lurking threat to both health care workers and their patients.
    How Anti-Vaccine Activists Defeated a Bill to End Religious Exemptions –
    The New York Times

    Neglected Tropical Diseases: The Gender Gap



    Knowledge Sharing

    Thank you for reading. If you have thoughts, feedback, story ideas, or questions you would like to share or interested in partnering with us on a special event coverage, please send a note to Chadia Wannous via email  


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