North Carolina

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September 19, 2023 | State Updates

Medical Advocates for Healthy Air (MAHA) is standing with medical and public health professionals to call climate change what it really is: a health emergency. In June, MAHA joined with over 70 other medical and public health groups to endorse “The Call to Action on Climate, Health and Equity: A Policy Action Agenda”.

MAHA has worked extensively to educate medical and health professionals about the health risks of climate change and related air pollution issues, and are also working with health sector leaders to develop campaigns that inform the public about climate health impacts.

North Carolina has one of the highest heat-related death rates in the country. This past summer’s record-breaking temperatures exposed many workers to unsafe working conditions. Yet while the climate crisis will only intensify this hazard, U.S. workers lack basic protections against excessive heat in their workplace. MAHA joined with nearly 100 health, environmental, and community organizations to support legislation that will protect workers during life-threatening heat waves. The proposed Asunción Valdivia Heat Illness and Fatality Prevention Act directs the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to set standards on preventing excessive heat in the workplace.

MAHA also partnered with Natural Resources Defense Council to shine a light on how this climate-driven health crisis impacts North Carolina. NRDC produced a video (below) featuring several health professionals, including MAHA Advisory Board member Candace Cahoon, discussing the serious health impacts of extreme heat.