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Climate Change Report|on Health Planned

WASHINGTON (CN) - Members of several federal agencies will publish a report on the effects of climate change on Americans' health, the Environmental Protection Agency has announced.

As part of President Barack Obama's work with the US Global Change Research Program, federal work groups led by members of Executive agencies the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National

Institute of Health, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the EPA have started a special report on how climate change impacts the health of people in the United States, the EPA announced.

The Interagency Crosscutting Group on Climate Change and Human Health and a subgroup of the Interagency National Climate Assessment Working Group will publish the report.

The report "will be an evidence-based quantitative assessment of observed and projected climate change impacts," according to the announcement.

Planned topics for the report include the effects of heat and cold waves, air quality, and the spread of disease in water and food.

"Though it is often difficult to attribute the exact impact of climate on many health indicators due to confounding factors (e.g., the ability of communities to prepare for and respond to the risks posed by climate change; the vulnerability of different populations and communities), such indicators will be instrumental not only in tracking and measuring health impacts of climate change, but also in identifying areas where public health intervention is most needed or likely to be most effective," the EPA wrote.

"A more comprehensive set of indicators will collectively demonstrate and communicate observed changes in climate change risk to Americans."

Aware that research into the health risks of climate change is developing, the EPA noted that the report "will pay special attention to research that frames risks in terms of probability-based changes in exposure, vulnerability, and adaptive capacity."

Comments on the proposed report, including information for the report and nominations for authors are due by the end of March. A public forum about the report will be held on March 13.

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