Climate Change could push millions to the edge of survival warns World Vision

  • 23.9 million people were forced from their homes because of weather-related disasters in 2019, nearly triple the 8.5 million people displaced by conflict in the same year
  • 140 million people could be forced to leave their homes by 2050
  • World Vision’s land restoration programme (FMNR) is practiced in over 26 countries and has restored more than15 million hectares of farmland in West Africa alone

April 22, 2021. To mark World Earth Day, World Vision is calling on global leaders to respond to the climate change crisis as they fear that a tsunami of climate related disasters could wipe out decades of development advances. Almost 24 million people were forced from their homes because of weather-related disasters in 2019 and it is estimated that 140 million people could be forced to leave their homes by 2050. Furthermore, one hundred million people could be at risk of extreme poverty, driven by climate change, by 2030

Andrew Morley, World Vision International President and CEO, said: “It is heart-breaking that millions of vulnerable girls and boys continue to be forced from their homes because of climate change. The effect of this crisis is utterly devastating and threatens countless lives, robbing children of their God-given potential.”

World Vision joins the world’s children in lamenting the slow response by the international community in the face of a global crisis that is disproportionately impacting the world’s most vulnerable and is calling on governments and corporations to support the full realisation of global climate commitments established by the UN, Paris Agreement and Sendai Framework. This includes reducing global emissions, restoring deforested landscapes and building community resilience to both climate change and climate-related disasters.

“Climate change, ecological crises, land degradation and pollution have put all of us in grave danger,” says Tony Rinaudo, Senior Climate Action Advisor for World Vision and chief architect of Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR), an innovative and cost-effective process that has restored more than 15 million hectares of farmland in West Africa alone. This has resulted in 1-2 tons CO2e  per hectare being sequestered each year.

“Earth Day gives us an opportunity to pause and commit to a fresh start. We can reverse the damage done, to regreen barren land, grow more drought-resistant crops and apply green technologies. Studies have shown conflict reduced by 70% as resource availability improved in Niger. But we need to act now before it is too late. Numerous experts endorse FMNR– putting it before donors, implementors and governments as a best practice land restoration intervention. When you consider that FMNR was barely known to the world as recently as 2012 – today, few stakeholders in the land restoration space would not have heard of it." Rinaudo added.

World Vision is warning that immediate global investments in mitigation, adaptation and resilience building are needed in order to stop millions being forced into life threatening poverty situations. The NGO has recently been confirmed as a supporting partner of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and will continue to prioritise its work to support those most impacted by climate change and to build upon its work on reversing the impacts of climate change through FMNR. It’s goal is to bring this innovative reforestation initiative to 100 countries worldwide.

“As ever, those who pollute the least are paying the highest price. This is a lamentable failure of the international community. We must act now to reduce emissions and deforestation, and work alongside communities to help increase resilience to climate shocks.” concluded Mr Morley.


Notes to editor

For more informationcontact

Niamh Cooper |  Director of Media and Social Media Engagement | | Skype: Niamh.cooper5 | Phone: +353 87 942 3371

World Vision is asking Global Citizens to:

  • #SeeChangeBeChange. Share on social the need for everyone to see the change climate is making and that we all need to be the change to combat this global threat.
  • Donate to Childhood Rescue. Donations reach children directly affected by climate-related disasters with emergency food, water and shelter while protecting their rights.
  • Sponsor a child. Child sponsorship improves community resilience and environmental sustainability through cost-effective solutions in at-risk communities around the world.

Media Resources:

  • Stories, videos and photos of children impacted by climate change: HERE
  • Details on Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration and other inexpensive environmental solutions: HERE
  • World Vision Climate Action report: HERE
  • World Vision report linking climate change with violence against children: HERE

How climate change impact on the most vulnerable:

  • 23.9 million people were forced from their homes because of weather-related disasters in 2019, nearly triple the 8.5 million people displaced by conflict in the same year.[1]
  • 11 of the 20 countries considered most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change have had humanitarian response plans each of the past seven years.
  • 8 worst ongoing global food crises are all closely linked to both conflict and climate shocks. [2]
  • Climate change could push more than 100 million additional people back into poverty by 2030. (World Bank).
  • Over 2 billion people around the world suffer food insecurity; 1.3 billion people live on degraded agricultural land; 60 million children live in areas of drought severity. [3]

World Visionis a Christian humanitarianorganisationdedicated to working with children, families and their communities to reach their full potential by tackling the root causes of poverty andinjustice.World Vision serves all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender.  For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter @WorldVision