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01.Climate Adversity: Yet Another Stressor for Rural Adolescents (pp. 513-519)
02.Climate Change and Child Health in Australia: Likely Futures, New Inequities? (pp. 493-500)
03.Flooding and Infectious Disease in Rural Children: Can Intervention Mitigate Predicted Increases in Disease Burden? (pp. 393-404)
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Australia, Lucky Country or Climate Change Canary: What Future for Her Rural Children? (pp. 501-512) $45.00
Authors:  Elizabeth G. Hanna, Jo McCubbin, Lyndall Strazdins, and Graeme Horton
Abstract:
Human health is a function of multiple determinants. Whilst
bio-genetics may be somewhat immutable, we can
influence social and environmental conditions. This paper
examines the impacts of climate change super-imposed
upon decades of rural neglect, upon rural living in a
naturally difficult environment. The demonstrated
manifestations are poor health outcomes. Rural children in
Australia are especially vulnerable to climate change. Here
we propose to consider the specific features behind this
vulnerability. Agriculture in Australia has long been
challenging due the extreme variability in existing climate.
International commodity markets and economic rationalism
have created a rural disadvantage, and driven many farmers
off the land. Climate change is predicted to further
exacerbate this trend by increasing the frequency and
intensity of heat waves, droughts, fires and floods. Recent
weather patterns indicate that climate science predictions
are already emerging. Survival of many rural communities
depends upon local agricultural prosperity, such that
downturns reverberate throughout regions. Despite the
charm of country living, rurality has become an un- healthy
determinant in Australia, across multiple parameters.
Concerns over future viability of farming are generating
physical and mental health problems among farming
families. Such a scenario places Rural Australia is in real
peril, and rural children are especially vulnerable to
becoming despondent about their future. Options exist to
not only salvage Australia’s rural future, but to engage rural
communities in mitigation; however this requires
commitment to pro-active climate change polices. 


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Australia, Lucky Country or Climate Change Canary: What Future for Her Rural Children? (pp. 501-512)