Bupa: How climate change is affecting our health

 

The World Health Organisation has described climate change as “the defining health challenge of our time.” Estimating that by 2030 the direct damage costs to health from climate change will be between 2.5-5 billion dollars per year. In this episode, we chat with Roger Sharp, Bupa’s Chief Sustainability & Corporate Affairs Officer, who explains the relationship between our health and the health of the planet and how Bupa’s definition of “corporate responsibility” is rapidly evolving.

He gives his personal views of what is sustainability means to him and stresses the importance of large corporations like Bupa setting long term sustainability goals. He likens sustainability as being the "guardian of the organisation" making sure that the company is still there in 75 years time, and by ignoring it you sacrifice company and societal growth and progress. 

Mr Sharp also sheds some light on the relationship between climate change and public health and where Bupa stands moving forward, reiterating the WHO's assertion that it is the "single biggest public heath challenge of our time". He explains many of the issues Bupa faces, stressing that "we cannot simply turn the blind eye and say, it's for someone else to do in five, ten or fifteen years. The evidence is clear". 

To hear that an organisation such as Bupa are willing and ready to take action on issues like sustainability and climate change is refreshing, and their hope is more organisations will follow. 

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