• Anna Huschka

Canada's Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund

Updated: May 24

Canada’s Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund is an initiative from the Public Health Agency of Canada, designed to alleviate the impacts of climate change on human health (1). The Public Health Agency of Canada works in collaboration with a variety of organizations to aid in the prevention of disease and injuries, while simultaneously encouraging beneficial physical and mental health practices (2). Other programs from the Public Health Agency of Canada focus on health risk preparedness, notably surrounding infectious diseases (3).

The Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund was launched in 2017 in response to the risk of climate change contributing to significant health threats, specifically infectious diseases (4). According to the World Health Organization, “climate change is the greatest threat to global health in the 21st century” (5). The Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund focuses on zoonotic, vector-borne, food-borne, and water-borne diseases, as well as the influence that climate change has on their frequency of occurrence (4).

Some of the primary points of focus for approved projects covered by the Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund focus on improvement of Canadian’s ability to learn about and understand the health risks that climate change causes, while also sharing research findings with health professionals (1). One such project is funding of $112,152 from July 2018 through March 2020 to Lakehead University to share the findings from research of the prevention and control of extreme weather events that can contribute to infectious diseases (1). Currently, the Government of Canada is not accepting proposals for projects to receive funding from the Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund (1).

The projects financed by the Infectious Disease and Climate Change Fund provide essential research that allows for Canada to better prepare for handling these diseases that infect us. Looking at the Government of Canada’s response to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the focus is slowing the spread of the virus, allowing for time for research and development, with $275 million currently invested into Canadian COVID-19 research (6). The majority of financial support from the Federal Government allocated to the provinces and territories are for research initiatives (6).

Overall, the Government of Canada has implemented programs and funds focused on research of infectious diseases and how climate change interacts with the process. In the midst of a pandemic, this preparedness is critical to have the capacity to fund research and innovation.


1. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/funding-opportunities/infectious-diseases-climate-change-fund.html

2. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health.html

3. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/programs.html

4. https://www.canada.ca/en/publichealth/news/2017/09/statement_from_canadasch iefpublichealthofficeronthelaunchofthein.html

5. https://www.who.int/globalchange/global-campaign/cop21/en/

6. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/canadas-reponse/government-canada-takes-action-covid-19.html


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Shake Up The Establishment is a youth-led, registered (#1190975-4) national non-partisan non-profit organization that operates within the geographical confines of what is currently known as "Canada", but what is referred to by its First Peoples, as Turtle Island. Indigenous peoples have inhabited Turtle Island for over 10,000 years, and were the sole inhabitants less than 500 years ago. We acknowledge that our address resides on Treaty 3 land, and is the traditional territory of the Erie, Neutral, Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee and Mississaugas Peoples. Turtle Island is still home to many Indigenous peoples and we at SUTE are thankful to be able to live, learn and work on this territory, whilst continuing to create meaningful change for the climate justice movement. We are aware that our actions as an organization and the work we put out have an impact on our land, and on all that inhabit it. We are humbled to be able to follow the lead of centuries long Indigenous-led efforts towards the protection and stewardship of this land and the people that inhabit it. We are committed to continually evaluating & decolonizing our practices, and we do our best to incorporate the lived experiences of the land defenders and protectors within our work. We also want to honour the voices of Black, and non-Black people of colour within our work, and continually recognize their resiliency in the face of years of systemic oppression as imposed by the Canadian state.


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