While climate change is a threat to all human beings, girls are particularly disproportionally affected by it.
A new report echoes these sentiments by indicating that the number of girls at extreme risk of facing the double blow of climate change and child marriage is set to increase by 33 percent to nearly 40 million by 2050.
Currently, almost 9 million girls face extreme risk of climate disasters and child marriage every year.
According to the report by Save the Children, released on the eve of International Day of the Girl, around two-thirds of child marriages happen in regions with higher-than-average climate risks.
The report Girls at the centre of the storm: Her planet, her future, her solutions, shows that currently, an estimated 29.9 million adolescent girls live in the top 10 child-marriage-climate hotspot countries.
Further, Save the Children analysis shows that between now and 2030, almost 60 percent of girls or 931 million will experience at least one extreme weather event, like flooding, drought or heatwaves
Research shows that an estimated 4 million girls in lower-income countries missed out on completing their education due to climate-related events in 2021.
The combination of the impact of the climate crisis and child marriage has created emergency hotspots for girls’ rights in Bangladesh and across sub-Saharan Africa, where all 10 of the top countries are located.
Apart from climate change crises. These children also face other challenges of conflict, high levels of poverty, gender inequality, and hunger which negatively exacerbate their challenges.
Hunger particularly is a major challenge to these girls as the report indicates that at least 49 million people, including girls and their families, are on the brink of starvation, unable to learn and grow because of longer-lasting droughts and the war in Ukraine.