We, Gabon, Malta, Mozambique, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates, have come together as the Security Council signatories of the Joint Pledges on Climate Change, Peace and Security, as well as Albania, France, Ghana, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States, in their national capacity, to showcase our continued dedication to systemize the CPS agenda across the Council’s work.
Today the Council convened to discuss the situation in Somalia.
Somalia is one of the clearest examples of how conflict and insecurity risks are exacerbated by climate change. Globally, Somalia is ranked among the most climate change vulnerable countries in the world.
Climate change, among other factors, impacts livelihoods, agricultural production and employment, adding heightened pressure on pastoralism. This intensifies already existing food and water scarcity in Somalia. In turn, it fuels intercommunal tensions and conflict between farmers and herders, exacerbates violence and forces displacement. The dire humanitarian emergency in Somalia is also heightened by climate change. For example, unpredictable weather patterns and floods hinder the ability of aid workers to deliver lifesaving aid.
The security situation in Somalia also underlines how the presence of the non-State armed actors, including the terrorist group Al Shabaab, can exploit the government’s strained resources to respond to citizen’s needs. They position themselves as service and relief providers to address the consequences of prolonged droughts and floods. This offers Al Shabaab opportunities for recruitment, expansion, control over territory – spreading insecurity and fueling conflict in Somalia.
To inform the Security Council and allow for a more holistic response, we reiterate the critical need to enhance data collection and analysis on how climate change impacts peace and security in Somalia. In this regard, the climate security advisor within the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia – the first advisor of this kind within a UN peace mission - can play a significant role to achieve this goal. Such data and reporting can support the implementation and development of climate adaptation measures and strategies, which can incorporate climate-related risks across all levels of governance.