Some people in Bangladesh have. Floods are actually part of their normal way of life. Now imagine you are one of them.
Imagine you are already facing increasingly severe climate change impacts. More floods, harsher storms, more erratic rainfalls and more saline water in the fresh water you’re drinking and cooking with. Moreover, you are infected by skin diseases and because you lost your job, you can’t afford to send your children to school. At the same time, food prices are rising. Because your husband -or wife- died, you may have received some help from the government, but it has now finished.
Of course, you might have heard about potential solutions that could reduce your vulnerability. For instance, better meteorological systems and flood early warning systems could help your community to anticipate floods and get prepared when they happen. Homes and schools built on raised foundations could prevent you from having to build and rebuild them again and again. More efficient irrigation systems or drought resistant crop varieties could mean that your hard work is not wasted. And there are many other examples.
But all of this has a price. You, in Bangladesh, every day, every hour, you are doing your best to adapt to this situation. Your government is already spending money to assist you and your community, but as a developing country, it can’t support all these expenses alone. It should be supported by countries that benefited most from a century of industrialization. That’s the reason they are richer than yours.
So, despite the current global financial storm, rich countries, responsible for the bulk of historical emissions, should and can provide most of the resources to implement existing solutions. Time has come for them to pay.
10,700 delegates – from 187 nations – gathering in Poznan are currently hammering out a new climate change treaty. They should agree that rich countries provide sufficient resources to help you to adapt to climate change. If they don’t, they will be responsible for your 26th move.