Unjust Waters – Climate change, flooding and the protection of poor urban communities: experiences from six African cities.

Title

Unjust waters – Climate change, flooding and the protection of poor urban communities: experiences from six African cities

Author

Action Aid International

Year

2007

Abstract

The right to adequate housing and ‘continuous improvement of living conditions’ was recognised more than three decades ago by the governments that ratified the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Six years ago, at the UN Millennium Summit, world leaders set a specific target for realising that right, by pledging to achieve ‘a significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers’ by 2020. However, in Africa – the world’s fastest urbanising region – climate change is already threatening that goal, putting the continent’s already strained urban cities under additional stress.

‘Environmental refugees’ from climate-related droughts and floods are already swelling the tide of rural-to-urban migration across Africa, and the trend is expected to intensify as drought increases its grip over large swathes of the continent. By 2030, the majority of Africa’s population will live in urban areas. Unfortunately, however, global warming is also bringing chronic flooding to the cities, which can be just as disastrous for poor urbanites as droughts are for farmers. Urban floods spread disease, interrupt schooling and destroy houses, assets and income.

Language

English

Citation

Action Aid. (2007). Unjust Waters – Climate change, flooding and the protection of poor urban communities: experiences from six African cities. London. https://www.actionaid.org.uk/sites/default/files/doc_lib/unjust_waters.pdf

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