COP26 – Midwives and the Impact of Climate Change

29 October 2021

From Sunday, 31 October to Friday, 12 November, the COP26 Summit will bring parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. 

On the occasion of the COP26 Summit, ICM emphasises the role that midwives play in providing environmentally sustainable healthcare. The Midwife-led model of care is innately environmentally sustainable, promoting normalised birth that relies on few medical interventions and resources. Additionally, midwives are often community-based primary care practitioners that provide health services where women and their families work and live. This limits the carbon footprint associated with traveling to and from health facilities. 

We need to return to community-based models of care if we want to build back better from the COVID-19 pandemic and protect our communities from future health threats and climate events. Put simply, investing in midwives and their status and autonomy is investing in solutions to the impacts of climate change. 

In support of the urgent climate actions that must be taken to protect the prosperity of women, girls and all people, ICM has also signed on to the #HealthyClimate Prescription Letter and we encourage our associations to do the same.

Read more about the Impact of Climate Change on women, newborns and families as well as for midwives themselves.

Read the PMNCH Health-Care Professional Associations Constituency Statement: Climate Change Impacts on the Health of Women, Children and Adolescents, supported by ICM.