US Climate and Health Alliance

How Eating Meat and Climate Change Have Contributed to Viruses Like Zika


Zika, a mosquito-borne virus currently spreading across Africa, the Americas, Asia, and the Pacific, has been declared an international public health emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO). The virus is suspected to cause a birth defect known as microcephaly, in which babies are born with small heads, a condition which can cause brain damage, developmental defects, and debilitation. According to WHO, as many as four million people could be infected by the end of the year. The virus has also been linked to neurological syndromes. As these links have been drawn, and the virus continues to spread rapidly, Zika’s risk profile has evolved from “a mild threat” to “one of alarming proportions.”

Resource Type
Blog Post
One Green Planet
Resource URL
April 16, 2016
Organization Type
Health and Human Impacts
Food security Vector-borne disease
Climate and Environmental Impact
Sustainable agriculture/local food systems
Health surveillance

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