Applying epidemiologic methods to tackle the climate crisis in British Columbia

When and Where

Wednesday, March 29, 2023 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm
Online Event


Shirley Chen


Climate change is the single greatest threat to human health in the 21st century. British Columbia (BC) is already seeing the effects of human-induced climate change. The past several years have been marked by an increase in the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events. Record-shattering temperatures, widespread flooding, and devastating wildfires have led to increased morbidity and mortality from heat-related illness, reduced air quality, and increased exposure to infectious diseases. Indirectly, climate change has impacted human health in BC through economic losses and disruptions in supply chains and infrastructure, widening existing health disparities, and by creating new challenges for already strained public health systems to respond to. In this seminar, I will present various projects currently being undertaken at the BC Centre for Disease Control to prepare for current and future threats to the health of BC residents from climate change.

About the Speaker

Shirley Chen is a Field Epidemiologist with the Canadian Field Epidemiology Program at the Public Health Agency of Canada. She is placed at the BC Centre for Disease Control in Environmental Health Services, where she works on a range of projects related to climate change and health. Her work has spanned a wide range of environmental health topics, from biomonitoring to emergence of zoonotic disease to climate and health. Shirley holds a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology with a Collaborative Specialization in Environment and Health from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, where she once participated in this class as a student.

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