Public Lecture at NUI Galway on the Consequences of Life on Earth

Thursday, 30 October 2008

The Director of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health in Northern Ireland, Gary McFarlane, will visit NUI Galway on Monday, 3 November to deliver a lecture entitled 'Life on earth: connections; co-dependencies and consequences – the case for a new mindset in policy and practice'. The event will take place at 5pm in the Seminar Room on the first floor of the Martin Ryan Institute Annex, NUI Galway. For many policy makers and indeed members of the general public there is, as yet, a poor grasp of the basic links between the impacts of climate change on our society, our economy and our personal health and wellbeing. There is also a misconception that the consequences of climate change will have little impact on the communities that inhabit these islands. Ireland is not just an island within the context of this clear and present challenge. Mr. McFarlane's presentation will provide some global perspectives on these issues. Dr Martina Prendergast, of the Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway, comments: "We are delighted to welcome Gary McFarlane to NUI Galway to discuss the global trends and philosophies of climate change. There is a real urgency at his stage to develop and implement relevant policies that address climate change while achieving a high quality environment with effective environmental protection". According to Gary McFarlane: "Climate change is probably the greatest threat to human health, wellbeing, quality of life and perhaps even survival that the human race as a species has ever faced. My talk will outline and explore some of the fundamental linkages between our health and our environment and will outline urgent and critical areas for intervention in order to attempt to secure a future for all who inhabit this planet". As Director of Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, McFarlane is involved in contributing to the development of healthy public policy, working with government ministers and departments, local authorities, universities, non-governmental organisations (NGO) and the private sector. Currently, much of this work seeks to assist in re-establishing the critical links between environment and health within the context of sustainable development and public health. This includes advocacy work with policy makers and politicians as well as working with practitioners, academics and researchers to build awareness, understanding and capacity in this area. Gary McFarlane is currently the co-chair of the Public Health Alliance, he is a board member of Sustainable Northern Ireland, and he also chairs the Advisory Board to the environmental health undergraduate programme at the University of Ulster. The lecture is one of a series of public outreach talks organised by the Environmental Change Institute at NUI Galway. Members of the public are welcome and a reception will be held before the lecture at 4.45pm. For further information, please contact martina.prendergast@nuigalway.ie
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