This discussion paper describes climate change in Australia and its impact on the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It highlights Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led initiatives in climate change adaptation and mitigation that strengthens wellbeing and benefits the global community.
The main findings are presented from a scoping review of academic and grey literature that was guided by the following key questions:
- What are the direct and indirect impacts of climate change on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing?
- What strategies are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and other First Nations communities using for mitigation and adaptation?
- Impacts from climate change will vary considerably across Australia.
- There are many varied direct and indirect climate change impacts on the morbidity and mortality of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
- To date, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have not been sufficiently included in national conversations about climate change.
- Many solutions are known, but access to these solutions is not equally or equitably available across Australia.
- Climate change presents an opportunity for redress and empowerment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to lead climate action planning based on their intimate traditional and historical knowledges of Country.