As climate change amplifies and multiplies crises around the world, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called Tuesday to protect affected communities and step up preparedness measures for the most serious repercussions on international peace and security
“Climate change amplifies and multiplies crises When climate change dries up rivers, erodes crops, destroys critical infrastructure and displaces communities, it exacerbates the risks of instability and conflict, ”the UN chief said during a Security Council debate on the consideration of climate-related risks to international peace and security and on the strengthening of resilience
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, whose country is chairing the Security Council for the month of February, took part in this debate, as did John Kerry, the President of States’ Special Envoy for Climate -United
The UN Secretary-General recalled that the past decade has been the hottest in human history Carbon dioxide levels have reached record highs, and fires, cyclones, floods and droughts have become the new normal “These shocks don’t just damage the environment we depend on; they also weaken our political, economic and social structures, ”he said.
According to him, “the course of action dictated by science is clear: we must limit global warming to 1.5 ° C by the end of the century” “And our duty is even clearer: we must protect the people and communities who suffer from climate change We must step up preparedness measures for the increasingly serious repercussions that the climate crisis is having on international peace and security, ”he added.
M Guterres noted that the consequences of the climate crisis are greatest “where fragility and conflict have weakened coping mechanisms, where people depend on natural capital, such as forests or fish stocks, for their livelihood. livelihood and where women, who bear the brunt of the climate emergency, do not enjoy equal rights ”
In West Africa and the Sahel, for example, more than 50 million people depend on livestock for their survival Changes in grazing methods have contributed to the increase in violence and conflicts between pastoralists and farmers
“If we do not protect the people most exposed and vulnerable to climate impacts, we can expect them to be increasingly marginalized and their discontent will only worsen,” warned the Secretary General “High inequalities can weaken social cohesion and lead to discrimination, the designation of scapegoats, heightened tensions and unrest, and increase the risk of conflict Populations already left behind will be increasingly disadvantaged ”
The UN chief also noted that climate change is causing displacement of people all over the planet “The forced displacement of more people around the world will clearly increase the risks of conflict and insecurity,” he warned.
To tackle the specific risks that the climate crisis poses to peace and security, the UN chief has detailed four priority areas for action
First, he says more emphasis should be placed on prevention through strong and ambitious climate action “The international community must take the necessary steps to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement (on the climate) and avert a climate catastrophe,” he said
Second, immediate action must be taken to protect countries, communities and people from the increasingly frequent and severe effects of climate “We need to break into the areas of adaptation and resilience, which requires a dramatic increase in the level of investments,” said M Guterres
Third, we need to adopt a concept of security that puts people at the center “It is by preventing and combating poverty, food insecurity and displacement caused by climate change that we will help to sustain peace and reduce the risk of conflict,” said the Secretary-General
The fourth priority is strengthening partnerships within the United Nations system and beyond
In conclusion, the UN Secretary-General urged the members of the Security Council to use their influence during this year to ensure the success of the upcoming United Nations Climate Conference, COP26, which take place in Glasgow (UK) in November, and mobilize other actors, including international financial institutions and the private sector, to do their part
In this time of “crisis and fragility”, the well-being and prosperity of mankind could be dramatically improved by prioritizing solutions rooted in nature, the UN chief said on Monday. United Nations Environment Assembly
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News – EN – Faced with the risks posed by climate change for peace, the UN calls for more prevention