McCann EpiCC campaign highlights climate change impact on human health

Mccann health epicc - The EnvironMental Issue - mediashotz

IPG Health agencies McCann Health London and McCann Health New Jersey today launched a new advertising campaign for charity EpiCC (Epilepsy Climate Change), to help raise awareness of the effects of climate change on human health. 

The campaign launches today (5 November), in Glasgow to coincide with COP26’s Youth and Public Empowerment Day. 

Not one of COP26’s two week main presidency programme schedule of debates is dedicated to discussing the implications of rising temperatures on human health.

EpiCC campaign

McCann Health London and McCann Health New Jersey created “The EnvironMental Issue,” an 8-page special edition newspaper, using ink grown from algae, with pulp from sustainable forests, and manufactured using wind-powered energy. 

It will be distributed in Glasgow during COP26 within Scotland’s broadsheet newspaper, The Herald. An online version includes instructions to download in the most eco-friendly way. 

A digital campaign, designed to make the lowest environmental impact with no imagery, colour and simple text, will also run on The Herald site and on social media channels.

“The EnvironMental Issue” features a series of articles from leading scientists and epilepsy experts about the EpiCC campaign; what it’s like to live with epilepsy, why it’s vital that human health (not just neurological conditions) is on the climate change agenda and a plea for global funding for further research. 

mccann health epicc EnvironMental issue - mediashotz
Front page news: McCann Health EpiCC campaign highlights impact of climate change on human health.

It also highlights the need to fight climate change on every level possible – and that taking positive action by even changing to renewable printing ink can have an impact.

EpiCC is a global climate change initiative set up by Sanjay Sisodiya, Professor of Neurology at UCL and Director of Genomics at the Epilepsy Society, after he noticed colleagues raising concerns about heatwaves and their impact on neurological diseases, including epilepsy. 

Initial anecdotal findings from the charity have found heatwaves increase the number and intensity of seizures in people with epilepsy, which is of huge concern for the 600,000 people in the UK alone who have the condition.

Everyone’s responsibility

Matt Eastwood, Global Chief Creative Officer, McCann Health, said: “Climate Change is everyone’s responsibility, and we have to act now; But awareness of all the issues – including those that affect our neurological and mental health is critical, which is why we were surprised to see these discussions missing from the official agenda for COP26. 

“We’re hopeful “The EnvironMental Issue” can help raise awareness around these issues, in an innovative and sustainable way.”

Guy Swimer, Executive Creative Director, McCann Health London, said: “We always strive for interesting ways to shine a light on public health issues, and future-facing solutions to them. 

“If all black ink used globally were produced the way we’ve made “The EnvironMental Issue,” it could save 17 million trees a year. 

“And if a newspaper printed with algae ink helps get people talking about the physical impacts of climate change, we’re happy to help.”

Professor Sisodiya emphasised the need for an urgent response to the challenges posed by climate change for human health: “It is vital that leaders don’t just pay lip service to climate change issues or those related to its impact on health – reducing carbon emissions should be a priority,” he said. 

“Evidence is emerging of a possible correlation between rising global temperatures and a potential worsening in neurological disorders, including epilepsy and strokes. Urgent research is needed.”