The American Psychological Association and ecoAmerica are pleased to offer this update of our 2017 report, Mental Health and Our Changing Climate. Since that report appeared, concerns about the mental health impacts of climate change have grown among health professionals, policymakers, and the public. Research on climate and health has accelerated and many new findings have emerged. With this update, we aim to provide readers with the information and guidance they need to stay current in this field and take effective action.
Indeed, now is the time to act. Climate change has become a crisis. As recent studies confirm, our society must begin now to adapt to the inevitable impacts of climate change on health and well-being and move toward reducing climate change. We know how to do this. What is needed is the commitment of individuals, communities, and nations to act.
This report provides the latest information on the multiple effects of climate change on mental health, the structural inequities that lead to some populations bearing greater impacts, and how people think about and respond to climate change. It goes on to describe how individuals and communities can strengthen their resilience in the face of climate change and work for climate policies that will lead to a healthier and more just society.
It is encouraging that so many people are now devoting their talents and energies to finding solutions to the climate crisis. We thank the authors of the report and the many scholars and professionals who contributed to the work presented here. We also thank the Well Being Trust and the other funders for their generous support of the preparation of the report. We hope you will find this report useful and inspiring. Please join us in taking action to overcome the climate crisis and strengthen the health of everyone.