Climate action for pandemic prevention: the role of food systems

Core message

The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) pandemics report highlights that the rising demand for meat and the globalized food trade drive pandemic risk through land use change (deforestation) and climate change. The expansion of livestock production has increased the potential of pathogen spillover to humans and the risks of antimicrobial resistance. Not only is this a threat to planetary health, but a hazard to public health. Implementing spillover prevention measures that reduce pandemic risk would bring ancillary climate benefits; protecting rainforests alone would bring approximately USD 4.3 billion annually in social benefits from reduced greenhouse gas emissions 


  • Build the case for including sustainable food systems into the climate policy process. 
  • Demonstrate, through the experiences of experts, governments and the WHO, the urgency of transitioning to sustainable food systems and the benefits that the transition will bring. 
  •  Fostering interdisciplinary exchange on challenges, experiences and ways forward. 


  • Abhishek Chaudhary from EAT Lancet
  • Roberto Céspedes, Minister Counsellor, Permanent Representation of Costa Rica 
  • Dr Francesco Branca, WHO nutrition Head
  • Jan Dutkiewicz   Political economist
  • Serge Morand OHHLEP
  • Todd Crane ILRI