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So these are both two issues that I care very much about. I whole-heartedly believe in the ability of the pharmacy profession to help patients, and I equally believe that our planet has never faced a challenge so large as the global warming challenge that is facing it currently.

So what do these things have in common?

I think all pharmacists should be environmentalists, and here is why. Our over-reliance on fossil fuels is raising our CO2 production higher than at any other time in the earth’s history. This leads, eventually, to all the disastrous effects on our weather, temperature, glaciers, and wildlife populations. Furthermore, we are quickly approaching the point at which we have used up more than half of the fossil fuels accessible on this planet. And since the planet is no longer creating oil at any measurable rate, as oil gets more rare, the price of fossil fuels and their derivatives will have to increase.

And where do many of the pharmaceutical products that our patients rely on come from?? Oh yeah! Petroleum products! A-ha there is the link. If fossil fuels reach a point where the market sees them as more rare, the cost of petroleum based products should increase. Leading to drug prices higher than the already high prices we currently see.

So instead of saving our earth’s petroleum reserves for pharmaceuticals and other products which maintain life and quality of life, we are burning them up and putting them into the air killing the planet and leading to more respiratory disease. It is definitely a more long-term issue, but that is why I believe all pharmacists should be environmentalists.

Are there any other connections between global warming and our profession?

What impact would moving to alternative energy sources instead of coal plants and internal combustion vehicles have on the prevalence of respiratory disease?

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June 2017
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