© 2024 WLRN
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

UNICEF: Caribbean Children Bearing The Brunt Of Global Warming's Monster Storms

A boy stand outside his family's wrecked home in the Dominican Republic after Hurricane Irma in 2017.

For years, Caribbean governments have argued their countries bear the brunt of climate change. A new U.N. study says Caribbean children may bear the worst of it.

The years 2014 to 2018 were the world’s warmest on record. Climate scientists say it’s no coincidence that during that period the Caribbean basin saw some of the worst hurricanes to ever hit the region.

Caribbean leaders call that proof that while rich countries produce most of the climate-warming greenhouse gases, poor countries like theirs suffer most of the consequences.

Especially kids. A study by UNICEF, the U.N.’s children’s agency, says between 2014 and 2018 more than 760,000 children in the Caribbean were displaced by hurricanes.

The study points out that trauma makes kids more vulnerable to diseases and mental health problems – as well as the threat of human trafficking and exploitation. It also jeopardizes their education.

UNICEF’s calling on Caribbean governments – and developed countries like the neighboring U.S. – to increase child-specific aid after hurricanes And to mitigate climate change’s causes and its effects in the region.

Tim Padgett is the Americas Editor for WLRN, covering Latin America, the Caribbean and their key relationship with South Florida. Contact Tim at tpadgett@wlrnnews.org
More On This Topic