Sunday 31 May 2009

The cholera of our era

Professor Sir Muir Gray

In the 19th century, cholera outbreaks that escaped from the slums to kill rich and poor alike caused the great Victorian revolution in public health. Fear of cholera ensured that vast sums were spent on building sewers and ensuring that everyone had clean water. Climate change is the cholera of our era.

The NHS is gigantic and has a carbon footprint that is nearly one twentieth of the whole UK’s footprint —
1.3 million staff each with their own footprint, the drugs bought, the buildings, the transport, the water and the food, too much of it thrown away.