GOAL 13: CLIMATE ACTION
Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
Goal 13 aims to combat climate change and its impacts by taking urgent action. Climate change and environmental degradation are equity issues that undermine the rights of every child, especially the most disadvantaged. The realization of children’s rights, as embedded throughout the SDGs, are contingent on taking action to address and adapt to climate change.
Climate change is a direct threat to a child’s ability to survive, grow and thrive. While children are the least responsible for the changing environment, close to 90 per cent of the burden of disease attributable to climate change is borne by children under the age of 5. Every year, over half a million children under the age of 5 die from causes related to air pollution. Even more will suffer lasting damage to their developing brains and lungs. Today, for the first time, a global generation of children will grow up in a world made far more dangerous and uncertain by changing climate and a degraded environment.
UNICEF works with partners at the global and local levels to ensure that children can live in a safe and clean environment. UNICEF helps put children at the centre of climate change strategies and response plans, recognizing them as agents of change who are taking action everywhere to protect the future of the planet. Data are required to accelerate strategies and actions on priority areas for children and climate action. Climate change related data/evidence on areas most relevant to children is scarce, specifically on interlinkages between climate and child health, nutrition, education, displacement, migration, etc. Collecting and disaggregating Goal 13 targets and indicators is vital to understanding how and where children are being left behind in the context of addressing climate change.
Child-related SDG indicators
Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries
Number of deaths, missing persons and directly affected persons attributed to disasters per 100,000 population
The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 was adopted by UN Member States in March
2015 as a global policy of disaster risk reduction. Among the global targets, “Target A: Substantially reduce global disaster mortality by 2030, aiming to lower average per 100,000 global mortality between 2020-2030 compared with 2005-2015” and “Target B: Substantially reduce the number of affected people globally by 2030, aiming to lower the average global figure per 100,000 between 2020-2030 compared with 2005-2015” will contribute to sustainable development and strengthen economic, social, health and environmental resilience. The economic, environmental and social perspectives would include poverty eradication, urban resilience, and climate change adaptation.
The open-ended intergovernmental expert working group on indicators and terminology relating to disaster risk reduction (OIEWG) established by the General Assembly (resolution 69/284) has developed a set of indicators to measure global progress in the implementation of the Sendai Framework, which was endorsed by the UNGA (OIEWG report A/71/644). The relevant global indicators for the Sendai Framework will be used to report for this indicator.
Disaster loss data is greatly influenced by large-scale catastrophic events, which represent important outliers. UNISDR recommends countries report the data by event, so that complementary analysis can be undertaken to obtain trends and patterns in which such catastrophic events (that can represent outliers) can be included or excluded.
This indicator measures the number of people who died, went missing or were directly affected by disasters per 100,000 population.
Death: The number of people who died during the disaster, or directly after, as a direct result of the hazardous event.
Missing: The number of people whose whereabouts is unknown since the hazardous event. It includes people who are presumed dead, for whom there is no physical evidence such as a body, and for which an official/legal report has been filed with competent authorities.
Directly affected: The number of people who have suffered injury, illness or other health effects; who were evacuated, displaced, relocated or have suffered direct damage to their livelihoods, economic, physical, social, cultural and environmental assets. Indirectly affected are people who have suffered consequences, other than or in addition to direct effects, over time, due to disruption or changes in economy, critical infrastructure, basic services, commerce or work, or social, health and psychological consequences.
𝑋 = ((𝐴2+𝐴3+𝐵1) / 𝐺𝑙𝑜𝑏𝑎𝑙 𝑃𝑜𝑝𝑢𝑙𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛)×100,000
A2 Number of deaths attributed to disasters;
A3 Number of missing persons attributed to disasters; and
B1 Number of directly affected people attributed to disasters.
* Detailed methodologies can be found in the Technical Guidance (see below the Reference section)
The Sendai Framework Monitoring System has been developed to measure the progress in the implementation of the Sendai Framework by UNGA endorsed indicators. Member States will be able to report through the System from March 2018. The data for SDG indicators will be compiled and reported by UNISDR.
Proxy, alternative and additional indicators:
In most cases international data sources only record events that surpass some threshold of impact and use secondary data sources which usually have non uniform or even inconsistent methodologies, producing heterogeneous datasets.
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UNICEF has nine key asks that encourage governments conducting a Voluntary National Review to ensure their reports on SDG 13:
- Support continuous and environmentally-focused education during the pandemic.
- Make children and child voices/solutions the centre of climate change and environmental strategies and plans.
- Enhance ambition of mitigation and adaptation approaches for children and youth.
- Recognize children as agents of change.
- Protect children from the impacts of climate change.
- Reduce greenhouse gases and promote sustainable energy investments.
- Address environmental degradation and reduce the effect of harmful pollutants on children.
- Accelerate and scale up investments to strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity of children to climate impacts.
- Reduce inequity to promote resilience to climate change.
Learn more about UNICEF’s key asks for implementing Goal 13
See more Sustainable Development Goals
GOOD HEALTH AND WELL-BEING
CLEAN WATER AND SANITATION
AFFORDABLE AND CLEAN ENERGY
DECENT WORK AND ECONOMIC GROWTH
PEACE, JUSTICE AND STRONG INSTITUTIONS
PARTNERSHIPS FOR THE GOALS