The threat posed to children and their rights by the climate crisis is not theoretical: it is real, and it is urgent. Save the Children has partnered with an international team of leading climate researchers led by the Vrije Universiteit Brussel to quantify the extent to which children will experience extreme weather events as a manifestation of climate change, the disparities between generations, and the widening inequality between high-income and low- and middle-income countries.
Without drastic mitigation action to reduce emissions and limit warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, led by high-income and high-emitting countries and informed by children’s best interests and identified priorities, the children of these low- and middle-income countries will be burdened with the most dangerous impacts of the climate crisis. They have inherited a problem not of their own making.
The window of opportunity to make a difference for children is quickly closing. Commitments to climate action and financing remain dangerously inadequate, and unless global leaders scale up their ambition now, current and future generations of children will suffer.
This report has been developed with the support of a dedicated Child Reference Group, comprised of 12 children aged between 12–17 years old from across the globe, to lay out how the intergenerational impacts of climate change are infringing on children’s rights to life, education, and protection.
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