Guest essay by Eric Worrall
Al Gore is hosting his own cut down version of a Centers for Disease Control Climate Conference which was cancelled in the wake of the Trump victory.
CDC’s canceled climate change conference is back on — thanks to Al Gore
It turns out there will be a conference in Atlanta next month about climate change and its effects on public health. It just won’t have the federal government behind it.
The reason? Former vice president Al Gore.
“He called me and we talked about it and we said, ‘There’s still a void and still a need.’ We said, ‘Let’s make this thing happen,’ ” said Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association. “It was a no-brainer.”
News of a revived conference comes days after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention abruptly canceled its long-planned Climate and Health Summit in the lead-up to the change in White House administrations. Benjamin called the move a “strategic retreat” given the climate skepticism of the incoming administration.
The cancellation got the attention of Gore, who organizers said hatched the idea to salvage some semblance of the gathering.
“Today we face a challenging political climate, but climate shouldn’t be a political issue,” Gore said in a statement Thursday. “Health professionals urgently need the very best science to protect the public, and climate science has increasingly critical implications for their day-to-day work.”
It’s not clear whether CDC employees who were scheduled to attend the agency-planned event will be allowed to attend its replacement at the Carter Center. A CDC spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
I wholeheartedly support Al Gore’s private intervention. People in the USA have a constitutionally guaranteed freedom to associate. What they do not have is a right to expect the federal government to fund their club meet ups.