Climate change threat to world peace, study warns

(EurActiv, 12 Jun 2019) Although the average level of global peace improved very slightly in comparison to previous years, there is little time or cause to rejoice, the 2019 Global Peace Index (GPI) suggested on Wednesday (12 June).

Launched in 2007, the annual GPI report produced by the Australia-based Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) ranks 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness.

The index assigns each country a score between one and five, where one is the most peaceful and five is the least, based on 23 indicators ranging from homicide levels to weapons imports.

The report for the first time factored in the risk posed by climate change, which is seen as a considerable threat to global peace in the next decade.

“Research is clear that changes in the natural environment impose stress on human societies,” researchers stated.

While admitting “long-term” evidence on the link between climate change and peace is “scarce”, the report states that available proof “suggests that climate has played a role in triggering or exacerbating conflict through its effects on livelihood security and resource availability”.

Nearly a billion people live in areas of high climate hazard and about 40% of them are in countries already struggling with conflict, according to the IEP.

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EurActiv, 12 Jun 2019: Climate change threat to world peace, study warns