Skip to main content

Poverty in Kibera Kenya Gates Foundation

The Environment of Poverty

Some of the world's most lethal killers stem from environmental problems, and poverty underpins many of them. So why does the world consciously choose to spend its aid money so ineffectively by devoting most of its environmental assistance to reducing greenhouse-gas emissions in developing countries?

COPENHAGEN – Despite gains in life expectancy, expanded access to education, and lower rates of poverty and hunger, the world has a long way to go to improve the quality of people’s lives. Almost a billion people still go to bed hungry, 1.2 billion live in extreme poverty, 2.6 billion lack access to clean drinking water and sanitation, and almost three billion burn harmful materials inside their homes to keep warm.

Each year, ten million people die from infectious diseases like malaria, HIV, and tuberculosis, along with pneumonia and diarrhea. Lack of water and sanitation is estimated to cause at least 300,000 deaths each year. Malnourishment claims at least 1.4 million children’s lives.

Poverty is one of the main killers. It is why children do not receive proper nutrition and live in neighborhoods with unclean water and inadequate sanitation. And it is why an entirely preventable disease like malaria kills 600,000 people each year; many are too poor to buy drugs and bed nets, while governments are often too poor to eradicate the mosquitos that carry the disease or contain and treat outbreaks when they occurs.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.

https://prosyn.org/zBRtO09;
  1. drew47_Drew AngererGetty Images_trumpgiulianasmiling Drew Angerer/Getty Images

    Will Trump Be Removed from Office?

    Elizabeth Drew

    Assuming the US House of Representatives votes to impeach President Donald Trump, the fact remains that there are far fewer votes in the Senate than will be needed to convict him and remove him from office. But the willingness of Congress – including the Senate – to continue tolerating his dangerous conduct is now truly in question.

    0
  2. rudd9_Darrian TraynorGetty Images_climateprotestburningaustralia Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

    Unsustainable Australia

    Kevin Rudd

    Before the current conservative government came to power in 2013, Australia was well-positioned to make the necessary transition to a low-carbon economy. But now, the country is heading in reverse, and has already fallen behind most developed countries, and even China, on reducing emissions and building resilience against climate change.

    1

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated Cookie policy, Privacy policy and Terms & Conditions