Climate change compounds hunger and conflicts

July 10, 2019


There are still people on this globe proclaiming that there is no climate change. It's useless to convince them any more. Fact is: the climate changed already massive and added to warfare worsening hunger and conflicts worldwide, according to one of Germany's largest aid groups. Welthungerhilfe has said many poor have "no more reserves or resilience left" when hit by extreme weather.
The world's southern hemisphere poor were bearing the brunt of climate change caused by rich, fossil-fuel consumers of the global North, Welthungerhilfe President Marlehn Thieme said in Berlin several days ago.
Presenting the Bonn-based organization's annual report for 2018, Thieme said climate change amounted to a "question of justice" in ensuring that resources — still sufficient worldwide to feed everyone — reached the poorest.
Hunger victims, often already cut off to outside help by conflict parties, no longer had livelihoods and sustenance as droughts, floods and storms wrecked their fields and eliminated their farm animals.
Yes,  climate change threatens peace efforts. Climate change is threatening the success of peacekeeping missions, according to a briefing by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) circulating on Tuesday. Eight of the ten countries hosting the biggest multilateral operations "are located in areas highly exposed to climate change," it said.
Germany pushes climate change as security risk. Floods, drought and mass migration: all factors why Germany has made the UN's response to climate change its priority at the Security Council. But political roadblocks at home and abroad could complicate action.
School Feng ShuiIf we watch around, we can easily notice, that weather extremes are compounding plight. Citing Cyclon Idai, which in April ravaged Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, President Thieme said weather extremes had become an additional "fatal link" hampering aid workers and restoration of communal nutrition.
Drastic declines in land and oceanic harvests amid rising average temperatures required answers in the form of early warning systems, weather insurance and drought-durable seeds.
Allow me to quote Welthungerhilfe's Secretary General Mathias Mogge. He said, "Coupled with warfare, in which conflict parties cut off entire regions from the outside world, extreme weather was a compounding factor".
The spiral of conflict is becoming more and more dramatic. Villagers are loosing their entire livelihoods. Resources like water and grazing land became scarce, leading to further conflict, in societies where people already had little to withstand emergencies.
Reporting on its 2018 efforts, Welthungerhilfe said it had spent €213.6 ($243) million on the fight against hunger and poverty last year. Public donors provided €155.4 milliion for project work. Private donations amounted to €54.9 million. The largest public donor was the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), which provided €38.6 million.
Hunger, thirst and conflicts because of climate change - meanwhile a never-ending story. Daily in our news. Global and local news. We can't keep our eyes closed any more.

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