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Climate Action: A Powerful Prescription to Improve Health and Equity

Wednesday, April 5 at 5:00pm to 7:30pm

Erb Memorial Union (EMU), Redwood Auditorium (EMU 214)
1395 University Street, Eugene, OR 97403

Climate change threatens all that we care about, especially as it is already harming health and threatening our health systems. These risks impact everyone to some degree, and climate change is already contributing to disease and death—especially in those who are the most vulnerable. An equitable transition away from fossil fuels is not just about polar bears and icebergs. It’s a fundamental prescription to improve health and equity both now and in the future. We have the tools we need, but achieving this rapid transition requires engagement from across academia and society. Communication and storytelling that places health and equity at the center of climate change is a powerful way to make the crisis personal and the benefits tangible. Learn how you can be a part of the solution during this timely talk with Renee Salas, MD, MPH, MS.

The talk and Q&A will be followed by a reception with light refreshments at 6:30 p.m.


About the Speaker

Dr. Renee N. Salas is a well-recognized expert on climate change and its implications for health and health care delivery. Dr. Salas was elected to the National Academy of Medicine—a recognition that is considered one of the highest honors in the field of health and medicine—for this work in 2021. She has led endeavors with the world’s top medical journals, including spearheading The New England Journal of Medicine Group’s Climate Crisis and Clinical Practice Initiative and serving as a guest editor for the series “Fossil-fuel Pollution and Climate Change.”  Dr. Salas is also a member of the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change. She served as the lead author of the U.S. Brief from 2018 to 2021, moved to senior author in 2022, and founded and leads its Working Group of over 80 U.S. organizations. She frequently speaks at high-level engagements across diverse sectors, including testifying before Congress for the full House Committee on Oversight and Reform. She engages in research to explore how climate change is impacting the health care system. She serves on committees at the nexus of climate change and health nationally and internationally and has received awards and recognition for her contributions. Her expertise and work are regularly featured in mainstream media outlets like the Associated Press, The New York Times, NPR, and USA Today.

Dr. Salas holds a variety of appointments at Harvard University, including as affiliated faculty and previous Burke Fellow at the Harvard Global Health Institute (HGHI); co-director of the ClimateMD program and a previous Yerby Fellow at the Center for Climate, Health, and the Global Environment (C-CHANGE) at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health; and affiliated faculty at the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She is also a practicing emergency medicine physician in the Center for Social Justice and Health Equity in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Her doctorate of medicine is from the innovative five-year medical school program to train physician-investigators at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, with a master’s of science in clinical research from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Her master’s of public health is from the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health with a concentration in environmental health.


About the Event and Our Sponsors

This talk will be delivered in person on the UO campus in Eugene, and it will be livestreamed and recorded. The event is free, but registration for the in-person talk is required, as seating is limited. (Registration link will be added in the near future.)

Sponsored by Center for Science Communication Research (SCR) and co-sponsored by the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact, this lecture is part of the UO School of Journalism and Communication’s annual Richard W. and Laurie Johnston Lecture series, which brings professionals to campus for thought-provoking lectures, workshops, and discussions about the thorny issues today’s journalists and communicators face.

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This event requires registration.