Why Does Your Health Voice Matter?
Health professionals are respected and credible individuals in their communities. Your voice can raise support for climate action by helping community members and policymakers better understand the health impacts of climate change and the co-benefit opportunities of climate action. Until now, the health message—that climate change is our biggest health crisis and that we need to act now—has been largely untapped in the climate change conversation. The USCHA State Policy Initiative addresses this gap by helping amplify and highlight the health voice on climate.
How to Use This Site
Our site is organized both by topic areas in climate policy as well as types of tools. Whether you know of a pertinent issue in your state or whether you have a specific skill you want to use, we have useful resources specifically designed and compiled for health professionals like you.
Each climate policy topic page includes:
- Background information on the policy area and how it relates to climate and health
- Why the health voice matters in this particular policy area
- A downloadable fact sheet that:
- Provides an overview of state policy in the particular area
- Examples of types of policies to advocate for or against, and
- Talking points
- An infographic to share with and engage others in the initiative
The advocacy tools page includes:
- Climate, Health, and Equity 101
- Policy 101
- Communicating with legislators
- State Climate Policy Tools
The State Policy Initiative is a living, changing resource. We’re working to continually update our resources to reflect what health professionals like you need to be more effective advocates. We ask for your feedback to help us improve the usability of this site and tools. We’d love to hear from you!
If you’re interested in being connected to others doing work in your state, and being a part of other climate and health work, join the Alliance.
I want to be a climate and health advocate in my state!
What is the State Policy Initiative?
The US Climate and Health Alliance created the State Policy Initiative for a simple reason: to help health professionals – you! – use your powerful voices to act on climate change, our most pressing health crisis. We’ve sorted through hundreds of resources to bring you the most useful and relevant tools to lend your voice to the climate change and health fight. We have also created a series of quick reference fact sheets that provide a starting point for understanding state climate policy and its health implications. Together, these resources create the information you need to start getting engaged in state climate policy. The Initiative is one arm of our work towards our mission: to amplify the health voice on a wide range of issues related to climate change and health, and to advance climate solutions that benefit health and equity, at all levels of governance.
Why State Policy?
Two words: Federal. Gridlock. The administration’s rollback of federal efforts to address climate change demands that more action and attention shift to state legislatures as venues for climate policy. States have been, and can continue to lead the way on climate change, but they can also be venues for detrimental legislation. We encourage you to learn more about the opportunities state policy presents for climate and health by using the resources we’ve compiled here.
Join the Alliance to connect with hundreds of other health professionals and organizations around the country working towards a healthy climate and a healthy public.
Additional Fact Sheets
We’ve started with three topic areas – renewable energy, energy efficiency, and transportation – but we plan to add more topics over time. New topics may include food systems; urban greening and green infrastructure; and fossil fuels extraction, storage, and transport. If there are other climate-related policy areas you’d like us to develop resources around, please let us know.
State Regulatory Resources
In addition to policies passed by state legislatures, a number of important policy decisions are made within and by state agencies. The fact sheets we’ve developed primarily focus on legislative advocacy, but many of the key messages on climate, health, and equity can be used in advocacy with state agencies. We hope to develop additional resources for regulatory advocacy, including summaries of some of the more important state agency decisions and regulations to track.
Page updated 7/31/17