South Sudan Medical Journal

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Too hot to handle? Heat resilience in urban South Sudan

Camillo Lamanna


South Sudan is at risk from the impact of climate change. This paper reviews the climate change issues faced by South Sudan, and the strategy as outlined to the United Nations. The author argues that the policy overlooks a key  potential cause of future morbidity and mortality: increased ambient  temperatures, particularly in urban centres due to the urban heat island effect. The capital is especially susceptible to heat-related mortality as it faces a ‘triple threat’: rapidly rising temperatures, an at-risk population profile, and inadequate planning for the pressures of urbanisation. Four low-cost, evidence-based recommendations are given to mitigate the impact of heatwaves on human health, and it is concluded that South Sudan has great potential to become a regional leader in heat resilience.

Keywords: climate change, urban heat island, heatwave, heat illness, Juba

AJOL African Journals Online