During the last days Paul Nicklen’s photo of a polar bear starving to death in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago provoked sadness and anger. It is indeed a symbol of the effects of climate change, that are destroying natural habitats, and that recalling the words of the photographer can help to “break down the walls of apathy”. Because there are solutions, “we must reduce our carbon footprint, eat the right food, stop cutting down our forests, and begin putting the Earth — our home — first”.
Today, 12 December 2017, global solutions will be actually discussed. After two years from the Paris Agreement of Climate Change, French President Emmanuel Macron, the President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, and the UN Secretary-General António Guterres, are meeting in Paris to discuss upon climate change: the One Planet Summit is today the moment for world leaders, but also for those working in private and public finance, to talk about the global efforts that are necessary in order to take action against climate change, whose consequences do impact the entire planet but have in different ways – not only among different world regions, but also within the same community. A recent document by the UN Department for Economic and Social Affairs, about climate change and social inequality shows the presence of a vicious cycle: inequality cause the most vulnerable groups to disproportionally suffer from climate change and this brings even more inequality. When the effects of climate change intersect with those of conflicts, consequences are even worse. For instance in Mindanao in the Philippines, a place hit by social and ethnic hostilities and by an increase number of typhoons and droughts, poverty and loss of land cause food insecurity. Women and girls in particular suffer from this situation because, since they can find a job more easily than men, they are forced to move away to seek for an occupation and migrating in times of conflict can be risky because of human beings trafficking, sexual abuse and exploitation.
Kito Onlus knows by direct experience how much the Philippines are vulnerable when it comes to climate change. Acknowledging that, it works in order to integrate into the projects a particular attention to environmental issues and the most vulnerable people. It does so by building energetically sustainable structures, by promoting the use of local workforce and resources, by favoring and encouraging the occupation of women, by fighting the waste. To have an example of Kito Onlus’ modus operandi, read here how it built a structure that is an example of green building!
And to conclude, just remember, we only have one planet and no plan B.
©United Nations Climate Change