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November 16, 2022

Children, Climate Justice, and Lessons From Puerto Rico

Author Affiliations
  • 1Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 3Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA Pediatr. 2023;177(1):13-15. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2022.5143

The Editorial1 in this issue of JAMA Pediatrics from leaders of African medical journals describing the perils of climate change underscores the inequity in their plight: African individuals have scarcely contributed to the climate disasters that increasingly exact great harms upon them. For those who know what climate change portends for children, this powerful moral case sounds all too familiar. Children—and especially children in lower-wealth communities—already bear the lion’s share of harms from the hurricanes, droughts, wildfires, and heat waves that greenhouse gas emissions make more severe, and they can hardly assert control over the emissions’ sources. This injustice beckons all who care for children to consider that threats to children’s health and health equity anywhere require full-bore climate action everywhere.

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