The Healthcare Industry and Climate Crisis: Justice in Health Research

Online Convergence Ethics talk

With: Paul Cummins, Assistant Professor The Bioethics Program at Icahn School of Medicine, Mount Sinai Sunnyside

Despite decades of scholarship on greening healthcare, the healthcare industry remains a significant contributor to the climate crisis, which in turn makes it a cause of the health harms that are a product of the climate crisis. Appreciation of the need of the need to mitigate its impact on climate has increased within the healthcare industry over the last year. While this initiative is laudable, it will not be sufficient to prevent the health crises that irreversible climate change will bring. I will argue that the healthcare industry should pursue research on treatments for the health conditions that the climate crisis will generate, as a matter of justice. Because the concepts of justice and social benefit within research ethics are insufficient to ground this duty, I will draw on concepts of justice in public health and environmental ethics to support this claim. This incorporation of a more expansive notion of justice into research will be defended as consistent with recent scholarship on approving applications for funding for COVID-19 research.


For information or registration please send an email to Cristina Richie.