How the international system should tackle climate risk
For the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to succeed, there must be an urgent move away from reactive ‘defence-oriented’ mindsets when managing climate risk.
Roughly two dozen international organizations, mostly in the United Nations (UN) family, foster cooperation and set the global agenda on a range of critical issues, including health, water, energy, environment, food, migration, security, and development.
Collectively they provide the world with a critical safety net and, in the words of the second UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld, the purpose is not to lead humanity to heaven but rather to ‘save it from hell’.
Climate change certainly provides a potentially hellish problem – happening everywhere, at all scales, and cascading across borders and sectors with unpredictable impacts. It is already damaging critical infrastructure, undermining economic growth, and displacing entire communities, and is an existential challenge for low-lying island states and coastal areas.
But our international ‘safety net’ was largely built between the end of the Second World War and the 1970s, before the impacts of anthropogenic climate change were widely understood, leaving the question of whether this system is fit for purpose in a climate-changing world.
Click here to continue reading the full version of this Expert Comment on the Chatham House website.
Latest News from
Energy for the most vulnerable remains a distant hope16/05/2022 16:43:00
Despite almost a decade of increased attention, delivering sustainable energy solutions for those forced to flee their homes is now further away than ever.
How Germany is changing its China strategy13/05/2022 16:43:00
Drawing on his recent article in International Affairs, Rafał Ulatowski analyzes Germany’s strategy on China and its implications for the wider Indo-Pacific.
Turkey’s climate opportunities and challenges10/05/2022 12:20:00
Turkey’s recent climate policy shift represents the beginning of a long transformation required to create a carbon neutral economy.
Putin’s Eurasian dream may soon become a nightmare06/05/2022 10:10:00
The Ukraine invasion has detrimental consequences for the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union, a project which has been stumbling since its inception.
Why business as usual will prevail in the Philippines05/05/2022 13:38:00
The explanations for Marcos and Duterte’s impending victory lie mostly in the country’s economic, social and political divisions.
South Asia suffers from fallout of Russia’s actions03/05/2022 13:38:00
The invasion of Ukraine has caused price shocks in South Asia at a time when its countries were already struggling to cope with economic crises.
How Ukraine will change Europe's Indo-Pacific ambitions26/04/2022 12:20:00
The Russian invasion of Ukraine reinforces the reality that only France and the UK can lead a European contribution to Indo-Pacific security.
How countries can regulate investment screening20/04/2022 15:10:00
To attract investment, certain regulations can help countries understand the size of the garden (where investors can play) and the height of fence (to keep out malign actors).