Second Annual Public Health Symposium: Climate Changes Your Health


Bowling Green State University hosted the 2nd Annual Public Health Symposium on Thursday, April 13, 2017. This year’s topic was “Climate Changes Your Health: How a Warmer Earth affects the Air, Land and Water” presented by Ned E. Baker keynote speaker Dr. Shannon Orr, BGSU associate professor and environmental policy expert.

The focus of this year’s symposium addressed one of the most pressing issues facing all of us: climate change. “Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of scientific evidence indicates that nature is currently standing in the on-deck circle warming-up,” said Dr. Philip Welch, public health assistant professor in the College of Health and Human Services. “We need to move very quickly away from misinformed opinions and political wranglings to swift, decisive, evidence-based decisions that lessen the human health costs associated with climate change.”

The symposium supported the American Public Health Association declaration of 2017 as “The Year of Climate Change and Health.”

The event highlighted the human health impacts of a warming earth. Audience members learned how our water, land and air are changing for the worse and the negative impact they are having on our health at this moment. Attendees learned how they can personally aid the effort and have a positive impact on the greater community.

A panel discussion featured community experts Dr. Timothy Davis, of the NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, Dr. Shannon Pelini, assistant professor in the BGSU Department of Biological Sciences and Ryan Wichman, WTOL meteorologist.

More than 100 students, faculty and members of the public were in attendance. Climate is a major element of shared public health therefore the active involvement of community members is essential for its care.