In April 2020, the College will be hosting the WONCA Asia Pacific Regional Conference, in conjunction with their partners, the Rural General Practice Network and Te Ohu Rata o Aotearoa - Māori Medical Practitioners Association.
Ahead of this major conference, we had a chat with one of the six keynote speakers – Professor James Renwick, an expert in weather and climate research.
What are you most looking forward to about speaking at the WONCA Asia Pacific Conference in New Zealand next year?
I think the theme of the conference, “Family Medicine leading the way towards an advanced world of equity, quality and compassion” is really wonderful and just the kind of thing we need in today’s world.
Climate change and environmental degradation threaten the health of all our communities, and the very basis of our social cohesion. To solve the huge problems the world faces, we need compassion, cooperation, and empathy – we all need to help each other as much as we can. I am passionate about doing my part to lead us towards a more equitable and sustainable future and I am excited to speak to such an engaged audience who are active in their own communities.
Could you please tell us what you'll be speaking about at WONCA?
I’ll be talking about the realities of the changing climate and the urgency of what we need to do as a society to avoid the worst futures. I’ll touch on why it’s a public health emergency as much as an ecological crisis.
What are you hoping delegates will take away from your presentation?
A better understanding of the science of climate change, what has already happened and what we can all practically do to slow down the change. I would like to leave the delegates with a sense of hope and of purpose, to move the world towards a sustainable future.