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Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) with Axios' Tina Reed.

Outcomes around maternal health are linked to climate change, Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) said at an Axios event on Wednesday.

Driving the news: Human caused climate change is also a public health crisis, as extreme weather events such as heat waves turn deadly, per Axios' Andrew Freedman. There is also the potential for vector-borne infectious diseases to spread outside their traditional range as the world warms.

  • Last year more than one-third of heat deaths were directly related to climate change, according to a recent study in Nature.
  • A study in October also found that climate change would allow more infectious diseases to spread more quickly.

Details: Underwood said exposure to extreme heat and air pollution are linked with "maternal and infant health outcomes."

  • She introduced the Protecting Moms and Babies Against Climate Change Act to "end our nation's maternal mortality crisis."
  • She explained that the bill would provide "patients, providers and communities" [with] additional resources to be able to combat these health care and maternal and infant health impacts of climate change."

What she's saying: "When we think about climate change and the way that it's impacting our lives, it's not just economic, it's not just in our immediate environment, but it's certainly impacting our individual health and our public health care system," Underwood said.

Of note: Underwood has also introduced the Climate and Health Protection Act, which will give $100 million "to municipalities and counties and states across the country to help them prevent, prepare for and really respond to these climate change related impacts on their populations."

Watch the full event here.

Go deeper

Updated Jan 15, 2022 - Energy & Environment

Earth's climate went off the rails in 2021, reports show

Temperature departures from average in degrees Celsius during 2021. (Berkeley Earth).

Global warming became local to a new and devastating extent in 2021, with the year ranking as the sixth-warmest on record, according to new, independent data from NASA, NOAA and Berkeley Earth.

Why it matters: Each year's data adds to the relentless long-term trend, which shows rapid warming due overwhelmingly to human-caused greenhouse gas emissions during the past several decades in particular.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 14, 2022 - Energy & Environment

Biden's latest Fed pick signals brewing climate battles

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Biden's plan to tap Sarah Bloom Raskin as top banking regulator at the Federal Reserve could intensify the central bank's already growing focus on climate change.

Catch up fast: The news broke Thursday night that Biden will nominate Raskin, a Duke University law professor, for the powerful role of vice chair for supervision.

The most startling facts in 2021 climate report

An unsettling part of the human condition today is that the year you were born will most likely be the coolest year of your life, globally speaking.

By the numbers: Newly released climate data from NOAA, NASA and Berkeley Earth show that the planet has had an unbroken streak of 45 years of warmer than average temperatures.