Climate crisis inflicting huge ‘hidden costs’ on mental health

Damian Carrington, ‘Climate crisis inflicting huge ‘hidden costs’ on mental health’,, the Guardian, Guardian News & Media Limited (26 May 2021)

The climate crisis is damaging the mental health of hundreds of millions of people around the world but the huge costs are hidden. (…) Heatwaves are increasing rates of suicide, extreme weather such as floods and wildfires are leaving victims traumatised, and loss of food security, homes and livelihoods is resulting in stress and depression. Anxiety about the future is also harming people’s mental health, especially the young. (…) There is also evidence that air pollution and extreme weather events such as wildfires and hurricanes can contribute towards higher rates of suicide. (…) Action by individuals, communities and governments not only cuts the impacts of heating but also boosts people’s mental wellbeing by giving them healthier lives and a sense of hope and agency. (…) Taking climate action seems to be very positive for mental health, both on an individual and community scale, but also as a society. (…) Climate action is likely to improve the mental wellbeing of everyone.