India is one of the four South Asian countries where children are most at risk from the effects of climate change that threaten their health, education and protection, according to a new UNICEF report.
“The Climate Crisis Is a Child Rights Crisis: Introducing the Children’s Climate Risk Index” (CCRI) is UNICEF’s first program to target children. It ranks countries based on children’s exposure to climate and environmental shocks such as cyclones and heat waves, as well as their vulnerability to those shocks based on their access to essential services.
Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and India are among the four South Asian countries where children are at extremely high risk of the effects of the climate crisis, ranking 14th, 15th, 25th and 26th respectively.
CCRI has placed India as one of 33 extremely high-risk countries, with flooding and air pollution being the repeated environmental shocks leading to socio-economic adverse effects on women and children.
About 1 billion children live in one of 33 countries classified as “extremely high risk”, including the four South Asian countries.
It is estimated that more than 600 million Indians will experience “acute water shortages” in the coming years, while at the same time flash flooding in most urban areas in India will increase significantly once global temperatures rise above 2 degrees. Celsius. Twenty-one of the 30 cities in the world with the most polluted air in 2020 were in India.
dr. Yasmin Ali Haque, UNICEF India representative, said: “Climate change is a children’s rights crisis. The data from the Children’s Climate Change Index has highlighted the severe hardships children face as a result of the increasing impact that climate and environmental shocks are having on existing inadequate access to essential services such as water and sanitation, health care and education.”
“Understanding where and how children are particularly vulnerable to this crisis is critical to building our resilience and effectively tackling climate change. UNICEF hopes the report’s findings will help prioritize action to protect those most at risk. and to ensure that children inherit a habitable planet.”
India’s neighbors Nepal ranks 51st and Sri Lanka 61st. Bhutan ranks 111th, with children at relatively lower risk.
“For the first time, we have clear evidence of the impact of climate change on millions of children in South Asia. Drought, floods, air pollution and river erosion across the region have left millions of children homeless and hungry, without any health care and water,” says George Laryea-Adjei, UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia.
“Together, climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic have created an alarming crisis for South Asian children. The time to act is now – if we invest in water, healthcare and education, we can protect their futures from the effects of a changing climate and degrading environment,” said Laryea-Adjei.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NewsMadura staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.)