State of World Population 2009: Facing a changing world - Women, population and climate
Publisher/Organizer: United Nations Population Fund
Publication date: 2009
Number of pages: 104
Language: English, French, Spanish
“Climate—the average of weather over time—is always changing, but never in known human experience more dramatically than it is likely to change in the coming century. For millennia, since civilizations arose from ancient farming societies, the earth's climate as a whole was relatively stable, with temperatures and patterns of rainfall that have supported human life and its expansion around the globe.
A growing body of evidence shows that recent climate change is primarily the result of human activity. The influence of human activity on climate change is complex. It is about what we consume, the types of energy we produce and use, whether we live in a city or on a farm, whether we live in a rich or poor country, whether we are young or old, what we eat, and even the extent to which women and men enjoy equal rights and opportunities. It is also about our growing numbers—approaching 7 billion.
As the growth of population, economies and consumption outpaces the earth's capacity to adjust, climate change could become much more extreme—and conceivably catastrophic. Population dynamics tell one part of a larger, more intricate story about the way some countries and people have pursued development and defined progress and about how others have had little say in the decisions that affect their lives.
Climate change's influence on people is also complex, spurring migration, destroying livelihoods, disrupting economies, undermining development and exacerbating inequities between the sexes.”