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Podcast: What to Expect from the World Humanitarian Summit

Podcast: What to Expect from the World Humanitarian Summit

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On May 23 and 24, UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon will convene the World Humanitarian Summit which is taking place on in Istanbul, Turkey.

In this podcast, experts from the American Security Project, International Alert, and the Red Cross Red Crescent outline their expectations, and underline that preparing for the adverse effects of climate change must be at the center of humanitarian preparations.

The World Humanitarian Summit is a first of its kind event. Designed by outgoing UNSG Ban Ki Moon in an attempt to improve the world’s response to humanitarian crises, the event is not an intergovernmental process but rather a multi-stakeholder dialogue.

The invitation-only Summit is the culmination of 2 years of extensive stakeholder engagement, unfortunately, climate change is not given the central role it should have in building an effective humanitarian assistance plan for the 21st Century. Climate change is referred to only in regards to its potential to create more extreme weather events.

Participants explained that we need to reform global humanitarian assistance away from a predominantly knee-jerk reaction in cases of extreme emergency. We know that climate change means that more storms, droughts, and extreme heat events are already happening, so we must prepare. We have a gathering climate emergency. 2015 was the hottest year on record – and all signs pointing to 2016 being the same – science has found more than 90% of disasters are already climate-related.