The Role of Inequality in Climate-Poverty Debates | Land Portal

Resource information

Date of publication: 
June 2016
Resource Language: 
ISBN / Resource ID: 
oai:openknowledge.worldbank.org:10986/24515
Copyright details: 
CC BY 3.0 IGO

There is no doubt that the poorest
people are already and will continue to be most severely
impacted by climatic changes, including shifting trends as
well as more frequent and severe extreme events. Yet, new
insights on the dynamics and distribution of poverty point
to the need to comprehend where the poor and poorest are,
how they are poor, and why their poverty constrains their
abilities to cope with and adapt to occurring and predicted
changes. This paper draws on a diverse and growing
literature on climate change and poverty to argue that
uneven power relations more so than exposure and sensitivity
to climatic hazards make the poor and disadvantaged
distinctly more vulnerable than more affluent, privileged,
and powerful groups and individuals. Further, climatic
stressors and climate change as well as climate policies,
often entangled with social exclusion and institutional
neglect, compound the issue of poverty and exacerbate human
precariousness, hence acting as a threat multiplier. The
paper compares different approaches to assessing poverty,
and explores structural processes and power dynamics that
drive or perpetuate inequalities. The paper also
investigates how the currently nonpoor may become transient
or chronic poor, how climate change may exacerbate poverty
traps, and how interventions to curb emissions and
multidimensional poverty may be tackled to pursue
climate-resilient development pathways.

Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

Tschakert, Petra

Publisher(s): 

The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. We are not a bank in the ordinary sense but a unique partnership to reduce poverty and support development.

Data provider

The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. We are not a bank in the ordinary sense but a unique partnership to reduce poverty and support development.