Climate Change, Population and Climate Change

Top Climate Scientists Agree: Family Planning Matters

Today, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released the Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability section of its Fifth Assessment Report. This report, for the first time ever, recognized the social dimensions of climate change adaptation–including population dynamics.

What does that mean? Basically, a working group of the IPCC (scientific body in charge of reviewing climate science and advising the United Nations), acknowledged that climate change is impacting people’s lives, and highlighted population dynamics and the important role that family planning can play in reducing climate change vulnerability. It’s a big deal that the world’s top climate scientists are recognizing these links, because it could pave the way for more policymakers to incorporate family planning in national climate policies and programs.

At PAI, we’ve heard the same thing over and over again from women around the world: their lives are already difficult, and climate change is making them even harder. Family planning is one tool that can help women adapt to climate change, by giving them more control over their health and family size. Watch the video above to see how climate change is affecting one family in Ethiopia, and what women are already doing to help their communities adjust.

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