Earth Day 2021: Understanding the Connection Between
Wellness and a Healthy Planet

From research on healthy built environments to information on why tree planting in cities is essential, the Global Wellness Institute trumpets the connection between a healthy planet and wellness. This Earth Day, understanding the convergence of wellness and the environment is more important than ever before.

Healthy Built Environments for Healthy People
The GWI’s White Paper Series establishes a new vision of a world with wellness at the core. Under the direction of GWI Senior Research Fellows Ophelia Yeung and Katherine Johnston, “Healthy Built Environments for Healthy People” describes how a unhealthy built environment can cause both chronic and infectious diseases. The in-depth analysis also explains the roles that communities, businesses and governments play in building healthier homes and communities for healthier people. Request a digital copy ofResetting the World with Wellness: Healthy Built Environments for Healthy People.”

Bike Lanes and Tree Planting Are Working
In a recent issue of the GWI’s Global Wellness Brief, global economist Thierry  Malleret explains that new evidence on air pollution is scarier than we thought: Burning fossil fuels causes nearly one in five deaths worldwide—a toll almost twice as high as previously believed.

However, in the war against air pollution, cities are ahead of governments. Bogota, Colombia, is a shining example of how powerful results can come from two simple things: planting trees and adding more cycle lanes. (They added 50 miles of bike lanes and cut particulate pollution by 80% in those areas.) And cities as diverse as Paris, Bangkok, NYC, Nairobi and Barcelona are creating as many green spaces (by planting trees) and walking/cycling networks as possible. It’s a major wellness-positive solution for the health of the air and people. Read more

Nature, Nature, Nature
In another edition of the Brief, Malleret explains how “Natural Capital Will Become Prominent Investment Theme.” COVID has made us aware of the importance of nature, highlighting how critical it is for our mental and physical health. Thus, the wellbeing of our planet and ourselves are seen as two sides of the same coin—investing in the former yields benefits for the latter. And this investment can generate more jobs and growth. One example that proves the point: managing our forests sustainably could generate 30 million jobs and create $2.3 trillion worth of potential business by 2030. There is no surprise that nature-based investment funds and other opportunities are proliferating. Read more

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