The Norwegian Refugee Council’s Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) says climate disasters triggered three times more displacements than violent conflicts did last year, as the number of people internally displaced worldwide hit 55 million, the highest level on record.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) says all new investments in oil, gas and coal must stop this year and no new coal-fired power stations can be built if the world is to stay within safe limits of global heating and meet the goal of net zero emissions by 2050.
Alok Sharma, the UK’s president-designate for November’s COP26 climate talks, says the UK is looking at how to use Covid-19 vaccines and testing to ensure the talks are able to go ahead in person, rather than as an online event.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has urged wealthy countries to donate COVID-19 vaccines doses to poorer nations instead of using them to vaccinate children, with WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warning the limited supply of vaccines to low- and middle-income countries has left large numbers of healthcare workers unvaccinated as their hospitals are inundated with people in desperate need of lifesaving care.
Dr. John Nkengasong, director at the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, says the global shortage of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines could force African countries that have already given first doses to populations to restart their efforts as they will not have access to enough doses to administer the second shot within the recommended window.
Adar Poonawalla, CEO of the Serum Institute of India (SII), says SII will ‘prioritise India’ as it scales up COVID vaccine manufacturing, but hopes to restart delivering doses to COVAX and other countries by the end of 2021.
Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank (AfDB), says the Special Drawing Rights the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is planning to issue this year should be used to buy out holders of African bonds and avert a crisis.
Health experts and advocates say the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on health systems illustrates the need to ramp up efforts to implement universal health coverage (UHC), with experts arguing delivering UHC and building resilient health systems can help to address both the current crisis and potential future pandemics.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE); the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the World Health Organisation (WHO), have come together to launch a new One Health High-Level Expert Panel focused on addressing the emergence and spread of zoonotic diseases.
The Independent Commission for Aid Impact, the UK’s development watchdog, says UK government ministers did not reexamine their ‘cut once, cut deep’ approach to reducing Britain’s aid budget in 2020 after new economic forecasts became available, leading to ‘more drastic than needed’ cuts.
Aid advocates have accused the British government of ‘abandoning’ Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh after cutting its aid for the crisis by more than 40%.
The Plastic Waste Makers index, a new analysis of the businesses and countries responsible for producing plastic waste, shows 20 companies are responsible for producing 55% of all the single-use plastic waste in the world.