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UNGA: The Humanitarian Impact of Combined Conflict, Climate and Environmental Risks

Statement by State Secretary Marianne Hagen at The Humanitarian Impact of Combined Conflict, Climate and Environmental Risks, 25 September 2020.

| New York

Climate change and environmental degradation increase the vulnerability of millions of people, especially in areas of armed conflict.

Norway is working actively to help to reduce the humanitarian impact of conflict and climate change. Let me highlight three of the challenges we are addressing:

First, in relation to mitigation: We promote innovation and green humanitarian responses. We ask our partners to choose sustainable and environmentally friendly solutions for their operations.

Second, in relation to adaptation and resilience: More than 40% of the countries experiencing a food crisis face the double burden of climate shocks and armed conflict. We will increase support for climate adaptation and resilience, with a special focus on food security.

Third, in relation to protection. Those who are already at risk in conflict-affected communities are often forced into an even more vulnerable situation when climate-related disasters strike.

Protection is the number one priority in Norway’s humanitarian policy. This includes protection against sexual and gender-based violence, protection of children and protection against mines and other explosive remnants of war.

The International Committee of the Red Cross is a key actor in the efforts to address these issues and promote greater respect for international humanitarian law.

I would like to thank the ICRC for its guidelines, which help to raise awareness of the need, and indeed our legal obligation, to protect the natural environment in armed conflict.

I would also like to thank you and your co-host Niger for your commitment to addressing the humanitarian impact of conflict and climate change at all levels, from local communities and all the way to the UN General Assembly. Rest assured that Norway will support your efforts in this field.