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Poorest will be hit hardest by global warming

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  • Mike Neuman
    Poorest will be hit hardest by global warming May 15, 2006 By Philip Thornton The poorest people in the world will be the chief victims of the West s failure
    Message 1 of 1 , May 17, 2006
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      Poorest will be hit hardest by global warming
      May 15, 2006
      By Philip Thornton

      The poorest people in the world will be the chief victims of the
      West's failure to tackle global warning, with millions of Africans
      forecast to die by the end of the century, according to a new report
      out today.

      The potential ravages of climate change are so severe that they could
      nullify the efforts to end the legacy of poverty and disease across
      developing countries, Christian Aid warns.

      The report highlights the fact that, despite hand-wringing in the
      West about the threat to its coastlines from rising temperatures, it
      is the poorest who look set to suffer most.

      Christian Aid said that a "staggering" 182 million people in sub-
      Saharan Africa could die of disease directly attributable to climate
      change by 2100.

      Many millions more face death and devastation from climate-induced
      floods, famine, drought and conflict triggered, it claims.

      Sir John Houghton, former co-chair of the scientific assessment
      working group of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, has
      given his support to the report's findings.

      "This report exposes clearly and starkly the devastating impact that
      human induced climate change will have on many of the world's poorest
      people," he said.

      Its warning came as almost 200 nations meet later this week in Bonn
      to try to close the gap between the US and its allies over the best
      way to combat climate change.

      While 40 nations are committed to cutting carbon emissions in line
      with the Kyoto Protocol, the United States and leading developing
      countries such as China have refused to sign.

      Kyoto obliges rich nations to cut emissions of greenhouse gases by at
      least 5.2 per cent below 1990 levels by 2008 to 2012.

      Few experts expect the Bonn talks to break new ground.

      The summit of the leaders of the Group of Eight rich nations chaired
      by Tony Blair in Gleneagles last July agreed to develop markets for
      clean energy technologies, increase their availability in developing
      countries, and help vulnerable communities adapt to the impact of
      climate change.

      Last week the head of environment at the World Bank, the
      international body that leads the fight against global poverty, said
      the world needed to do more to protect the poor from the threats from
      global warming.

      "As a development institution we have to focus on the fact that
      millions of people will suffer from climate change," Warren Evans
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