Canadian Cardiovascular Society

Climate Change

According to the World Health Organization, climate change is the “single biggest health threat facing humanity.”1 It affects cardiovascular health globally due to air pollution and extreme heat.

In Canada, air pollution is responsible for over 15,000 premature deaths annually2 and half of those are related to ischemic heart disease and stroke.3 Air pollution accounts for ~20% of cardiovascular disease deaths globally.4, 5 Extreme heat is the second major climate change-related factor that directly impacts cardiovascular health.6

Climate change working group

In 2021, the CCS formed a Climate Change Working Group who develops and steers our work in this space. The working group’s objectives are to:

  • Raise awareness about the effects of climate change and mitigation strategies;
  • Promote and adopt individual and collective climate actions, including climate actions as a professional Society; and
  • Advocate for policy change in support of climate action and cardiovascular health.

Review CCS’s federal climate change call to action.

  1. World Health Organization. Climate change and health. Accessed on November 30, 2021.
  2. Health Canada. Health Impacts of Air Pollution in Canada: Estimates of morbidity and premature mortality outcomes – 2021 Report. Accessed on April 5, 2022.
  3. Rajagopalan S, Landrigan PJ. Pollution and the Heart. N Engl J Med. 2021;385:1881-189.
  4. World Heart Federation. Air pollution and cardiovascular disease: A window of opportunity. Accessed on November 30, 2021.
  5. World Health Organization. Preventing disease through healthy environments: A global assessment of the burden of disease from environmental risks. Accessed on November 30, 2021.
  6. Chaseling GK, Iglesies-Grau J, Juneau M, Nigam A, Kaiser D, Gagnon D. Extreme Heat and Cardiovascular Health: What a Cardiovascular Health Professional Should Know. Can J Cardiol. 2021;37:1828-1836.
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