More people in our region are affected by climate change than anywhere else in the world: 83% of people are affected by droughts, 97% affected by flood, and 92% are affected by storms. Poverty, weak governance and inequality amplifies these risks
There is a high demand for contraception in our region (over 60% of women who want contraception are not using it). In a disaster, health systems struggle to cope and reproductive health services especially. This risks the lives of women and their babies. Gender equality and opportunities for women and girls also suffer during times of crises and stress
The world’s total population is now 7.6 billion, and is projected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050. Much of this growth will occur in low and middle-income countries. Rapid population growth puts pressure on health and other systems, which worsens people’s vulnerability to climate change disasters.
Helping the 214 million women in our region who do not want to get pregnant, but are not using modern contraception, would also help reduce unsustainable consumption and production, and improve food and water security. The IPCC has found if the world’s population follows a slow growth path, global carbon pollution would fall by 15% in 2050 and by 40% in 2100.
The links between smaller family sizes and economic growth are also well established, and there is a strong correlation between increasing female participation in the economy and falling fertility. Being able to plan one’s family means being able to participate in education and the workforce; and smaller families can invest more of their time and money into their children
The report cites research around the cost-effectiveness of investing in family planning – suggesting it’s a relatively cheap way to reduce CO2 pollution.