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Human Development Report 2007-2008

Fighting Climate Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World

image of Human Development Report 2007-2008
Climate change is the greatest challenge facing humanity at the start of the 21st Century. Failure to meet that challenge raises the spectre of unprecedented reversals in human development. This year’s Human Development Report explains why we have less than a decade to change course and start living within our global carbon budget. The Report explains how climate change will create long-run low human development traps, pushing vulnerable people into a downward spiral of deprivation. Because climate change is a global problem with global causes and effects, it demands a global response with countries acting on the basis of their historic responsibility and capabilities.

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Climate shocks: Risk and vulnerability in an unequal world

Climate science deals in measurement. Emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are weighed in tonnes and gigatonnes. Concentrations of greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere are monitored in parts per million (ppm). Confronted with the data, it is easy to lose sight of the human face of the people who are most vulnerable to climate change—people such as those quoted above.

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