This year (2022), inter-council exchange and cooperation on the issue of Planetary Health and adjacent concepts is on the agenda. The EEAC Network will also engage – together with the Planetary Health Alliance – in convening European partners working on Planetary Health.
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In January 2022, 23 organizations working on Planetary Health in Europe came together recognizing the urgent need for transformational change in the region and globally to address the Earth crisis. After several meetings, this newly formed Planetary Health European Hub now consists of 63 organizations from 12 countries representing a diverse array of sectors including universities, healthcare, international coalitions, policy, cities, youth, humanitarian groups, business, civil society, and more.
Europe’s policy, funding, and organizational landscapes make the region rich in opportunities for building this Planetary Health hub. From the European Green Deal, the Health Environment Research Agenda for Europe, to the upcoming Horizon Health 2023 Agenda, now is the time to connect the dots, build collaborations, link to the policy community, and access funding to address Planetary Health priorities at scale.
In this context, the Planetary Health Alliance, in cooperation with the EEAC Network organizes the Planetary Health European Hub Convening 2022. The convening in Amsterdam hosted by Hub member ARTIS, will take place from September 26th to September 27th 2022 and will be the first time this Planetary Health community will come together in person to agree on priorities, build relationships, identify overlapping interests and activities, begin sharing lessons learned, and develop partnerships. To accomplish this, this meeting has several goals: 1. Imagine what transformational change looks like in Europe for Planetary Health related to research, education, policy, and other sectors of society. What can this European Hub do to achieve this change? 2. Finalize development and agreement of the Hub concept note that will serve as a template for the Hub and future funding proposals. Identify possible funding sources and agree on a plan to submit one or more proposals. 3. Democratically agree upon a governance structure/secretariat system and select leadership. 4. With the backdrop of ARTIS and the beautiful city of Amsterdam, build lasting relationships with others in the European Planetary Health community.
Representatives from the Advisory Council for the Sustainable Development of Catalonia, the Environment and Nature Council of Flanders, the Finnish Expert Panel for Sustainable Development, the German Advisory Council on the Environment and the German Advisory Council on Global Change e-met on September 12th 2022 for a collegial exchange on the topic of Planetary Health and adjacent concepts. They informed each other about their ongoing work and discussed, among others, the relationship between the concept of Planetary Health and sustainable development, and the challenge of mainstreaming the concept of Planetary Health in policymaking. Colleagues further discussed possible synergies in their work and discussed possible next steps in exchanges among councils and between councils and external experts.
Ahead of an in person convening of the Planetary Health European Hub to take place in Amsterdam this fall, a two-hour online convening for Hub members was scheduled on June 27th 2022. Over 40 colleagues form 22 organizations from across the EU took part.
The meeting aimed to develop concrete steps to complete concept notes of the Hub’s four action tracks ( research; education; movement building; and policy engagement). Moving the Hub’s concept notes forward is important in the run-up to the in person convening in fall.
Representatives from the The Advisory Council for the Sustainable Development of Catalonia, the Environment and Nature Council of Flanders, the Finnish Expert Panel for Sustainable Development, the German Advisory Council on the Environment and the German Advisory Council on Global Change e-met on March 16 for a collegial exchange on the topic of Planetary Health and adjacent concepts. They informed each other about their ongoing work and discussed, among others, the relationship between the concept of Planetary Health and sustainable development, the integration of ‘environmental health’ in sectoral policies, as well as Planetary Health as a scientific concept and the challenge of mainstreaming the concept of Planetary Health in policymaking. Colleagues further discussed possible synergies in their work and discussed possible next steps in exchanges among councils and between councils and external experts.
On February 24th the second Planetary Health European Hub meeting took place. Over 29 organizations and institutions participated. The meeting opened with a recap of the January convening followed by a group discussion regarding what organizations are looking for from this Hub. Organizations then broke out into four groups based on the most popular domains of interest from the post-January convening survey, including: 1)Research, 2) Education, 3) Implementation (movement building), and 4) Implementation (governance/policy). These break out sessions focused on concrete actions and next steps. A next Hub meeting is scheduled to take place early April 2022.
The Planetary Health Alliance, in partnership with the EEAC Network, hosted the Planetary Health European Convening on January 18th 2022.
22 organizations from nine countries across Europe attended, several of which represent many more countries in Europe and globally. Organizations representing a diverse array of sectors including healthcare, universities, religious institutions, humanitarian groups, youth, policy, business, and civil society joint. There were numerous interesting areas discussed, ranging from education courses and degrees; research agendas and gaps; to planetary health communication, policy, advocacy, and movement building.
The third and final webinar in the joint EEAC/CADS webinar Series on Planetary Health, took place on Thursday October 28th 2021. The session focused on various initiatives that are working to help governments prevent future health risks related to ecosystem degradation, biodiversity loss, pollution and climate change. Two specific initiatives – The Helsinki declaration, and EU Green Deal – were discussed in the context of the Planetary Health Concept by Jaana Halonen (Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare) and Céline Charveriat (Institute for European Environmental Policy). The presentation given by Sabine Schlacke (German Advisory Council on Global Change) then focused on policy instruments available to prevent future health risks related to ecosystem degradation, biodiversity loss, and land use (change). The webinar was concluded by a video message from the Planetary Health Alliance and a plea by EEAC Network Chairman Arnau Queralt for better integration of the concept of Planetary Health in policy making. The recordings can be found here , and the presentations can be found below.
The Helsinki declaration by Jaana Halonen (Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare)
The EU Green Deal, an opportunity for enhancing Planetary Health by Céline Charveriat (IEEP)
Rethinking Land in the Anthropocene by Sabine Schlacke (WBGU)
On October 21st the second of three consecutive webinars on the concept of planetary health took place. During this second webinar, entitled “Planetary Health in the Anthropocene”, Nick Jacobs (Director, IPES-Food), Jordi Serra-Cobo (Lecturer, IRBio), and Aleksandra Kazmierczak (Expert – Climate change and human health, EEA) touched upon the food-health nexus, the profound relation between biodiversity loss, land use change and threats to health, as well as on the relation between climate change and human health. The recordings can be found here, and the presentations can be found below.
Unravelling the food-health nexus by Nick Jacobs (IPES-Food)
Escaping the 'Era of Pandemics' by Jordi Serra-Cobo (UB)
Health: a driver for climate action, by Aleksandra Kazmierczak, (EEA)
On October 14th the first of three consecutive webinars on the concept of planetary health took place. During this first webinar, entitled “Planetary Health, Introduction to a New Paradigm”, Josep Maria Antó-Boqué (ISGlobal), Sarah Dickin (Stockholm Environment Institute) and Peter Sousa Hoejskov (World Health Organizaiton, Regional Office) touched upon the concept of Planetary Health from different angles, like human health and the one health concept, and discussed policy coherence and entry points for the concept of Planetary Health across the Paris Agreement, Agenda2030, the Sendai Framework, and the New Urban Agenda. The recordings can be found here, and the presentations can be found below.
What is Planetary Health? by Josep Maria Antó-Boqué
Planetary Health: Policy coherence and entry points, by Sarah Dickin
One Health: The integrated approach from human health, by Peter Sousa Hoejskov