Global challenge 1:

Climate change

5 Global challenges – What do we need to prioritize this decade?

The five global challenges emerging from the Strategy 2030 consultations are a balance of existing and emerging risks, that are most relevant to our mandate and our scope of influence. These are inseparable from each other and are heavily influenced by trends identified in our Global Thematic Futures Report.

Climate change is one of the biggest risks and a threat multiplier, facing humanity in the coming decades. Rising climate risks already affect almost every aspect of our work, including health, shelter, livelihoods, and disaster risk reduction. Climate change also increases the uncertainties we face and will accelerate displacement in densely populated regions. At the same time, these events will be increasingly complex, compounded by poverty, disease, displacement, and conflict, and interacting with urbanization and population growth, putting increased pressure on scarce natural resources, including the demand for food and water. These intersecting issues is ramping up exposure and vulnerability. From increasing climate-related risks in cities, in regions already suffering from violent conflict, and the grave consequences for the mental health and psychosocial well-being of the individuals and communities who are affected. 

As the world adapts to rising risks and implements what needs to be a radical shift towards a low-carbon economy, our role to address and bring attention to the needs of people in vulnerable situations will be increasingly important. Adaptation and mitigation must be high on our collective agenda for human well-being and integrated into all of our work. We will need to be prepared for and anticipate events ranging from local emergencies to mega-disasters, from predictable events to unexpected disasters. More holistically, we will also dedicate more concentrated efforts to reducing human vulnerability to longer-term consequences of climate change that will threaten development, poverty reduction and water and food security. 

Our focus over the coming decade must be on reducing the current and future humanitarian impacts of climate change and to support people to thrive in the face of it.

Climate change can no longer be viewed in isolation. Climate risk management and the underlying drivers of vulnerability must be integrated into all of our programmes and operations.

We need to embrace early action models, scientific forecasts, and other innovations that can improve our response.

We also need to adopt better environmental management and nature-based solutions in our approaches to addressing exposure and vulnerability. 

As decisions are taken at local, national and global levels to address climate change, our strong humanitarian voice will be critical to foster the right level of ambition on both adaptation and mitigation, but especially also to ensure people in vulnerable situations are not left behind. We will speak out at all levels on the impacts of climate change on current and future humanitarian risk, calling for greater attention to those most at risk and more support for community-level action.

To increase our impact in all areas of our work, we will also foster and strengthen new and different types of partnerships drawing on new expertise, outreach and scientific knowledge. We will expand our legislative advocacy, strengthen the Red Cross and Red Crescent Green Response Framework, and strive to reduce our own environmental footprint. 

Related content

CLIMATE CHANGE AND SMALL ISLAND STATES

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A DEFINING DECADE FOR CLIMATE ACTION

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5 Global challenges – What do we need to prioritize this decade?

The five global challenges emerging from the Strategy 2030 consultations are a balance of existing and emerging risks, that are most relevant to our mandate and our scope of influence. These are inseparable from each other and are heavily influenced by trends identified in our Global Thematic Futures Report.

Climate change is one of the biggest risks and a threat multiplier, facing humanity in the coming decades. Rising climate risks already affect almost every aspect of our work, including health, shelter, livelihoods, and disaster risk reduction. Climate change also increases the uncertainties we face and will accelerate displacement in densely populated regions. At the same time, these events will be increasingly complex, compounded by poverty, disease, displacement, and conflict, and interacting with urbanization and population growth, putting increased pressure on scarce natural resources, including the demand for food and water. These intersecting issues is ramping up exposure and vulnerability. From increasing climate-related risks in cities, in regions already suffering from violent conflict, and the grave consequences for the mental health and psychosocial well-being of the individuals and communities who are affected. 

As the world adapts to rising risks and implements what needs to be a radical shift towards a low-carbon economy, our role to address and bring attention to the needs of people in vulnerable situations will be increasingly important. Adaptation and mitigation must be high on our collective agenda for human well-being and integrated into all of our work. We will need to be prepared for and anticipate events ranging from local emergencies to mega-disasters, from predictable events to unexpected disasters. More holistically, we will also dedicate more concentrated efforts to reducing human vulnerability to longer-term consequences of climate change that will threaten development, poverty reduction and water and food security. 

Our focus over the coming decade must be on reducing the current and future humanitarian impacts of climate change and to support people to thrive in the face of it.

Climate change can no longer be viewed in isolation. Climate risk management and the underlying drivers of vulnerability must be integrated into all of our programmes and operations.

We need to embrace early action models, scientific forecasts, and other innovations that can improve our response.

We also need to adopt better environmental management and nature-based solutions in our approaches to addressing exposure and vulnerability. 

As decisions are taken at local, national and global levels to address climate change, our strong humanitarian voice will be critical to foster the right level of ambition on both adaptation and mitigation, but especially also to ensure people in vulnerable situations are not left behind. We will speak out at all levels on the impacts of climate change on current and future humanitarian risk, calling for greater attention to those most at risk and more support for community-level action.

To increase our impact in all areas of our work, we will also foster and strengthen new and different types of partnerships drawing on new expertise, outreach and scientific knowledge. We will expand our legislative advocacy, strengthen the Red Cross and Red Crescent Green Response Framework, and strive to reduce our own environmental footprint. 

Related content

CLIMATE CHANGE AND SMALL ISLAND STATES

By Ms. Fine TU’ITUPOU ARNOLD, Secretary General of Cook Islands Red Cross Society

Read more

A DEFINING DECADE FOR CLIMATE ACTION

By the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre

Read more

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