The Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) said that the negative effects of climate change represent a major challenge to the human rights system, noting that they affected about 3.3bn people around the world.
This came during the speech delivered by Chief of Mena Section at UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Mohamed Ali Alnsour, during the International Conference on Climate Change and Human Rights, organised by the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), in co-operation with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, UN Development Program (UNDP), League of Arab States, and Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI), with the participation of more than 300 experts and stakeholders from different countries around the globe.
Alnsour warned that the negative effects of climate change constitute a direct, immediate and long-term threat to the right to life, the right to water and food, the right to health, adequate housing and the right to self-determination. He pointed out that 3.3bn people have become the victims of climate change, of whom 97.6mn were victims of disasters related to climate change in 2019 only.
He warned that the number of people affected by floods will increase from 1.2bn to 1.6bn in 2050, while carbon dioxide emissions will affect the density of nutrients, which will exacerbate the problem of malnutrition, especially among children. Alnsour pointed out that between 2000 and 2019, Africa witnessed 134 droughts, including 70 cases in East Africa, adding that one person dies every 48 seconds in countries affected by drought, and 5mn deaths have been reported as a result of high temperatures, and more than half of those deaths occur among children.
He touched on the negative effects of the industrial activities of major economies, which extended to 55 countries with fragile economic systems that lack sufficient resources to adopt policies to adapt to the consequences of the climate crisis.
Mohamed Ali Alnsour at the conference. PICTURE: Shaji Kayamkulam