Action on the climate crisis
The climate crisis is a child rights crisis.
The climate crisis is here and getting worse each year.
The world continues to get warmer at an alarming rate, putting almost every child at risk of more frequent and destructive climate hazards – air pollution, cyclones, disease, flooding, heatwaves and water scarcity. As these hazards continue to intensify, more children will be harmed; more will die.
Over 1 billion children are at extremely high risk of severe and destructive climate hazards.
These crises will not affect everyone equally. Children will suffer more than adults, with those in the poorest communities bearing the biggest burden.
What needs to happen
Rapid emissions reduction remains the only long term solution, however, because some impacts of climate change are now unavoidable and irreversible, we must immediately save and protect children’s lives by building the resilience of every child and young person to the impacts of this crisis.
UNICEF is calling on Parties to:
Protect the lives, health and well-being of children and the resilience of their communities by adapting essential social services to a changing climate, more frequent disasters and degrading environment.
Empower every child through their life course with the developmental opportunities, education and skills to be a champion for the environment.
Reduce emissions and fulfil ambitious international sustainability and climate change agreements.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change makes clear that we must act now to secure a livable and sustainable future for all. What does this mean for children?
For youth: Get inspired, share and act
To address the climate crisis, everyone needs to understand why it is happening and what can be done to defend against its impacts. Use these resources to introduce yourself to climate change and invite your friends, family and school to join in.
Join the community
Express your views and support for the issues that matter to you on Voices of Youth - UNICEF's digital community for youth, by youth.
UNICEF at COP28
At COP28 UNICEF is calling on leaders to:
- Elevate children within the final COP28 Cover Decision and convening an expert dialogue on children and climate change.
- Embed children and intergeneration equity in the Global Stocktake (GST).
- Include children and climate resilient essential services within the final decision on the Global Goal for Adaptation (GGA).
- Make the Loss and Damage Fund and funding arrangements child-responsive with child rights embedded in the fund's governance and decision-making process
For policymakers, researchers and partners
Did you know that the world has already warmed by approximately 1.1C since the 19th century? The years 2015–2021 were the warmest on record.
The world’s children are now more than ever vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate hazards.
With 4.2 billion children expected to be born over the next 30 years, there is an urgent need for action.
Addressing climate change requires international policy action. Addressing water security requires regional and national policy action. By linking climate and water, we can create new pathways to address climate change at a regional and national level.