Monday, May 25, 2009

Climate change has a considerable impact on the emergence and re-emergence of animal diseases

World Organization for Animal Health (or OIE): The impact of climate change on the emergence and re-emergence of animal diseases has been confirmed by a majority of OIE Member Countries and Territories in a worldwide study conducted by the OIE among all its national Delegates.

“More and more countries are indicating that climate change has been responsible for at least one emerging or re-emerging disease occurring on their territory. This is a reality we cannot ignore and we must help Veterinary Services throughout the world to equip themselves with systems that comply with international standards of good governance so as to deal with this problem,” explained Dr Bernard Vallat , Director General of the OIE.

Indeed, the conclusions of the study on “Impact of climate change and environmental changes on emerging and re-emerging animal disease and animal production”, presented by Australian expert Dr Peter Black, the Rapporteur for this Technical Item at the General Session, call for a new approach to prevent these new dangers.

…126 of the OIE's Member Countries and Territories took part in the study. Of these, 71% stated they were extremely concerned at the expected impact of climate change on emerging and re-emerging diseases. 58% identified at least one emerging or re-emerging disease on their territory that was believed to be associated with climate change. The three animal diseases most frequently mentioned by the OIE Members that responded were: bluetongue, Rift Valley fever and West Nile fever….

A transmission electron micrograph (TEM) with a highly magnified view of a tissue infected with Rift Valley fever (RVF) virus, Centers for Disease Control


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