UNDP, UNHCR Shine Spotlight on Climate Change Impacts on Human Mobility, Health
UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
story highlights

Participants at the UN press conference on human mobility and climate change called for broadening the scope of refugee protection to include those forced to leave their country because of climate change impacts.

A UNDP op-ed titled, ‘The Whole of Islands Approach,’ reports on a partnership between the UNDP, the Governments of Australia and New Zealand, and SIDS to build next-generation climate resilience projects.

Another UNDP op-ed titled, ‘Partnering for the health of people and planet,’ discusses the impacts climate change on human health and well-being.

8 November 2017: The UN Climate Change Conference, currently underway in Bonn, Germany, has been generating momentum for climate action on multiple fronts. A UN press conference on human mobility and climate change, held in the margins of the 23rd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UNFCCC, examined the issue of climate change displacement. The UN Development Programme (UNDP) published op-eds on climate resilience and migration, and climate change impacts on human health.

During the press conference, participants discussed the issue of climate migration. They noted that climate displacements have been on the rise due to an increase in climate change-related events, with Cuba, Fiji, the Philippines, Tonga and Sri Lanka being among the most affected. Participants highlighted that the poorest and the most marginalized are five times more likely to be displaced and remain so for longer than people in higher income countries. Some called for broadening the scope of refugee protection to include those forced to leave their country because of climate change impacts. A representative of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) suggested a bottom-up approach, using effective regional-level practices, such as humanitarian protection visas, temporary protection and stay arrangements, and migration laws. [UN News Centre Press Release] [UN SDGs Press Release]

According to a UNDP op-end, “integrated approaches are key to ensuring that the priorities of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development are mutually reinforcing.”

A UNDP op-ed titled, ‘The Whole of Islands Approach,’ reports on a partnership between the UNDP, the Governments of Australia and New Zealand, and small island developing States (SIDS) to build next-generation climate resilience projects, with funding from the Green Climate Fund (GCF). The projects include: providing safe and reliable water to over 30% of Maldives’ citizens; ensuring integrated flood management in Samoa; and improving coastal adaptation in Tuvalu.

The article notes that there are only two solutions to sea level rise and other climate change impacts in SIDS: migrate or adapt. Focusing on adaptation solutions, it calls for building resilience to climate change and natural hazards in all socioeconomic sectors. The op-ed advocates a stronger ecosystem-based approach that uses cutting-edge techniques, technologies and know-how to protect the environment and support a healthier planet. [The Whole of Islands Approach]

Another UNDP op-ed titled, ‘Partnering for the health of people and planet,’ discusses the impacts climate change on human health and well-being, which are exacerbated in countries where health systems already struggle to manage existing health risks. The article highlights the role of partnerships between governments, civil society, UN agencies, and global environment and health organizations to support countries in responding to the health impacts of climate variability and change by working at the nexus of health, environmental sustainability and climate change, disaster risk reduction (DRR), gender equality and poverty alleviation. It underscores that “integrated approaches are key to ensuring that the priorities of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development are mutually reinforcing.” [Partnering for the Health of People and Planet]

* * *

The SDG Knowledge Hub publishes regular adaptation and loss and damage updates that can be found under the tag Adaptation and Loss and Damage Update.


related events


related posts