1.3 billion people live in poverty.

Poverty is often defined according to the financial poverty line: if a person has an income of under $1.90 per day, then they are below the poverty line [1]. However, this does not capture all aspects of poverty [1]. The Multidimensional Poverty Index is a more comprehensive measure of poverty: it scrutinizes how a person can be deprived across 10 indicators [1]. These cover health (nutrition and child mortality), education (years of schooling and school attendance), standard or living (cooking fuel, sanitation, drinking water, electricity, housing and assets) [1].

According to this index, across 101 countries there are 1.3 billion people who are classified as multidimensionally poor [1]. A third of these people are children under the age of 10 [1]. 84.5% of multidimensionally poor people live in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia [2]. The country with the highest proportion of people in multidimensional poverty is South Sudan, at 91.9%, followed by Niger at 90.5% [2]

Climate change hits the poorest people in the world the hardest [3,4,5,7]. This is a great injustice, given that the poorest countries and people have contributed the least to the global greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change [8,9]. In our next post we’ll look in more detail at how climate change can increase poverty, and how we can have ‘climate justice’ so that the effects of climate change are split fairly [6,10].


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