Thursday, October 13, 2016

Another Planetary Tipping Point

Out of 7.5 billion people in the world, more than 1 billion - or one in seven people - live on less than $1.25 (1.13 euros) a day.

Natural catastrophes and changing climate could have devastating effects on cities in developing countries, the World Bank has said. As a result, over 77 million people could slide into poverty.

Home to 55 percent of the world's population, urban areas are the engines of global growth, contributing to 80 percent of global GDP. However, the high density of people, jobs and assets which make cities so successful, also makes them - and global industry - extremely vulnerable to the wide range of natural and manmade shocks and stresses," the Bank said. "If high climate impact coincides with inequitable access to basic infrastructure and services, natural disasters will force tens of millions of urban dwellers to extreme poverty and may cost cities worldwide $314 billion (285 billion euros) each year by 2030," the report said.

Ede Ijassz-Vasquez of the World Bank said, "We're approaching a tipping point for the safety of cities all over the world."

New infrastructure to deal with potential climate problems comes with a hefty price tag. Worldwide, countries will have to spend $1 trillion (91 billion euros) to cover costs.

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