CLIMATE CHANGE AND MALARIA
Several studies show that changes in temperature and rainfall affect the natural habitats of mosquitoes,
changing the prevalence of the vector or prolonging transmission seasons (or both) in some areas, and
potentially exposing new regions and populations to malaria and other vector-borne diseases. Seen in
this light, climate change has the potential to intensify the global burden of certain diseases, including
malaria, and reverse interrelated developmental gains. The World Health Organization and the World
Meteorological Organization have identified malaria as one of the most climate sensitive diseases, with
a wealth of evidence suggesting significant associations between changes in temperature, rainfall and
humidity and malaria incidence.
Weather and climate are major determinants of the geographical distribution, seasonality, year-to-year
variability and longer term trends of malaria. Periods of long-term drought can reduce transmission.
Periods of unusually high rainfall, altered humidity or warmer temperatures can result in modified
distribution and duration of malaria, as well as increased transmission, even in areas where control is
strong. Natural climate variability – including the El Nino phenomena and other long-term
meteorological cycles – are important not only in explaining trends in disease burden but also periodic
upsurges in cases, including atypical epidemics.
A World Bank report indicates that by 2050, climate change may threaten some previously unexposed
regions of South America, sub-Saharan Africa and China causing a 50% higher probability of malaria
It stresses the need to build alliances between malaria programmes, ministries of health and relevant
environmental and development partners (including national meteorological agencies). It also calls for
national malaria programmes to integrate the management of climate-related risks into their
At Action for Climate Change and Environmental Conservation – ACCEC, our environment related
intervention has 3 approaches in addition to other medical interventions, guidelines and
1. Growing of mosquito repellant herbs and trees in our compounds and gardens.
2. Clearing bushes around our homes and use the same bio waste materials to make
charcoal briquettes thus saving some money in households.
3. Training or sensitization about proper plastic waste management since plastic enables
water stagnation that acts as a breeding ground for mosquitoes.