ICF International is working with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) National Center for Environmental Assessment (NCEA) to analyze climate change impacts that will pose particular challenges for elderly populations in the United States and to outline an agenda for action that includes research, adaptation, and communication.
A range of physiological and social factors make older adults disproportionately sensitive to extreme heat and weather events, poor air quality, and infectious diseases, which may increase in frequency and severity due to climate change. During the course of this work, ICF hosted a listening session with aging-related nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), wrote a white paper summarizing the state-of-the-science as identified through a comprehensive literature search, and conducted an expert workshop. The results of this ongoing work will culminate in two peer-reviewed publications, one articulating the state-of-the-science regarding challenges for older adults posed by climate change and the other summarizing the agenda for research, adaptation, and communication produced at the workshop. The first publication will analyze the extent and nature of climate change challenges as well as the ability of the elderly to adapt to or cope with them.
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