This resource has been compiled with support from Ms Renee Sandells, Dr Cybele Dey and colleagues from the Sydney Childrens' Hospitals Network's Department of Psychological Medicine Climate Change and Mental Health Working Group.

Australians, including healthcare workers, are increasingly aware that climate change is impacting mental wellbeing. We see this with direct impacts of increased and more severe floods, bushfires, storms and drought. There is growing understanding that hotter weather seriously harms mental health.

There are also more complex impacts, such as indirect impacts of social determinants of health, disruption to connections to country for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and impacts on mental healthcare services. Priority populations including people with mental health conditions, children, young people, pregnant women, people living in poverty, people living with disabilities, refugees, culturally and linguistically diverse communities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are particularly impacted. Overarching these impacts, awareness of climate change is now having significant impacts on the mental wellbeing of Australians, especially children and young people.

On the other hand, the ways that we can protect mental wellbeing and health and turn distress into effective climate action to protect health are rapidly emerging. This includes listening to and connecting with consumers who have lived experience and to our First Nations' peoples, who successfully cared for country for millennia before human-induced climate change.

Health care workers providing mental health care have their own personal and professional experiences of climate change, alongside supporting consumers, families, and carers who are impacted. Providing they have sufficient support and safety to do so, healthcare workers can potentially gain satisfaction and improve their own wellbeing from reducing the carbon footprint of healthcare, moving healthcare from being part of the problem to part of the solution.

Resources

Resources and services for professional development and information, mental health clinician support, and for consumers on climate change and mental health. These are provided to support, not replace, your local mental health services.

Professional development information

See publications for more detailed research.

Professional and clinical resources for mental health clinicians

Information, online resources and services for consumers

General

For children and young people

Useful links to connect with other young people taking peaceful action, which can benefit mental wellbeing:

For parents and carers

For teachers and school counsellors

For people impacted by a climate event or disaster

Publications

Current as at: Friday 28 October 2022
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