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New York, Jan 26 (Canadian-Media): Climate change is increasingly recognized as a threat multiplier by scientists, political representatives, and civil society across the world, media reports said.
An open debate was held on Friday by United Nations (UN) Security Council to focus on effective ways to diminish the effects of global warming and discuss its concrete impact on peace and security.
United Nations Security Council. Image credit: Facebook page
The meeting took place ahead of the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Summit, convened for 23 September this year, and two months after 197 parties to the UN Climate Change Convention agreed to find out a way to implement the 2015 Paris Agreement, which aims to keep global warming under 1.5°C from pre-industrial levels.
Rosemary DiCarlo, the Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affair in her opening remarks said the complex relationship between climate-related risks and conflict which often affects political, social, economic and demographic factors and added,
“The risks associated with climate-related disasters do not represent a scenario of some distant future. They are already a reality for millions of people around the globe – and they are not going away."
Although it had long been debated if UN’s peace and security body should examine climate change, but its importance to many countries became inevitable when the debate was attended by over 70 Member States.
Included in the meetings in the Council chamber, were also statements from a dozen Ministers, including Kuwait, Belgium, Indonesia, Germany and Poland .
Since examination of the linkages between climate change and insecurity in meeting of April 2007, the UN body has acknowledge that the two issues are related and in July 2018, a debate was held how best to understand and address climate-related security risks.
Three key areas were focused on were: developing stronger analytical capacity and risk assessment frameworks; collecting stronger evidence base; and building to reinforce partnerships within and outside the UN system.
The Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), Achim Steiner also called on the Security Council to recognize the science and empirical evidence, and invest in climate adaptation and risk reduction for the millions of people already suffering from the effects of climate change.
The UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) was invited, for the first time in history, to brief the members of the Security Council on climate and extreme weather issues.
Professor Pavel Kabat, Chief Scientist at the WMO informed that climate change had a multitude of security impacts and increasingly regarded as a national security threat.
A youth representative and a researcher on environmental security, Lindsay Getschel also voiced the same concern and added how climate change impacts local youth through displacement, unemployment, food insecurity, and recruitment in armed groups.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)