United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched a new report today that revealed how climate change can hamper the development in the Arab Region and may render efforts to end poverty and hunger by 2030 futile.
As per the report, the Arab region is now the planet’s most water-scarce and food-import-dependent region with malnutrition rates rising. The world’s largest population of refugees and displaced people reside in this region. The Arab region includes 14 of the world’s 20 most water-stressed countries.
Adriana Dinu, Director, Global Environmental Finance, UNDP, said, “Over the past decades, the region has seen significant economic and social progress. Climate risks threaten to derail these development gains. This could disrupt efforts to build peace, cause a spike in ‘eco-migrants,’ and undermine efforts to end hunger, poverty and inequality by 2030”.
In past, the region has seen cycles of drought, resulting in situations of famine and food insecurity, loss of livelihoods and life, consequently, the displacement of millions. The report stated that the Arab region’s environment is prone to rising temperatures, sea-level rise, and increased risks of floods and droughts. Climate change projections reveal that by the year 2025, the water supply in the region will be only 15 percent of levels in 1960.
UNDP is supporting countries in the four sub-regions of the Arab region to adapt to climate change impacts and build climate resilience. Mourad Wahba, Assistant Administrator and Director of the UNDP Regional Bureau for Arab States, said, “UNDP works closely with our national partners to build resilience of institutions and communities to anticipate, absorb and adapt to increasingly complex risks from climate change”.