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Climate change could raise demand for humanitarian aid, UN warns

Activists hold banners during a demonstration against climate change and calling for environmental action in Morocco on November 13, 2016 [Jalal Morchidi/Anadolu Agency
Activists hold banners during a demonstration against climate change and calling for environmental action in Morocco on November 13, 2016 [Jalal Morchidi/Anadolu Agency]

Climate change is threatening the lives of millions of people throughout the world, and demand for humanitarian aid could rise 50 per cent by 2030, the United Nations has warned.

According to a report released by the UN’s World Meteorological Organisation on the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction, over the past 50 years, more than 11,000 disasters have been attributed to weather, climate and water-related hazards, involving two million deaths and $3.6 trillion in economic losses.

In 2018, globally, around 108 million people required help from the international humanitarian system as a result of storms, floods, droughts and wildfires. By 2030, it is estimated that this number could increase by almost 50 per cent at a cost of around $20 billion a year, the report continued.

“Early warning systems (EWS) constitute a prerequisite for effective disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. Being prepared and able to react at the right time, in the right place, can save many lives and protect the livelihoods of communities everywhere,” said WMO Secretary-General Professor Petteri Taalas.

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