Climate Change is a bigger threat than COVID-19; Red Cross

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Climate Change
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Switzerland-based global humanitarian network, The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), generally referred to as the ‘Red Cross’ has urged the world to react with the same vigor to climate change as to the coronavirus crisis while warning that the global warming poses a greater threat than the pandemic.  

In a new report on global catastrophes since the 1960s, Red Cross has remarked that even as the pandemic rages, climate change is not taking a break from wreaking havoc. The body cited that more than 100 disasters, many of which are climate-related have occurred in the world affecting millions since the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the pandemic in March.

More than 50 million people had been affected, the Geneva-based movement responded.

Speaking in a virtual press conference, the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) Secretary-General Jagan Chapagain acknowledged the grave nature of the pandemic stating that “Of course, the COVID-19 is there, it’s in front of us, it is affecting our families, our friends, our relatives. It’s a very, very serious crisis the world is facing currently.”

The IFRC chief observed that “climate change will have a more significant medium and long term impact on human life and on Earth.”

Mr. Chapagain remarked that while it looks increasingly likely that one or several vaccines would soon become available against COVID-19, “there is no vaccine for climate change” warning that global warming “will require a much more sustained action and investment to really protect the human life on this Earth.”

The imperfect balance 

It is estimated that close to $50 billion would be needed annually over the next decade to help the 50 developing countries to adapt to the changing climate.

The IFRC team commented that $50 billion needed to support the climate change cause is minuscule compared to the global response towards the economic impact of COVID-19, which has already passed $10 trillion.

The body observed that that much of the money invested so far in climate change prevention and mitigation was not going to the developing countries most at risk.