Mamadou prays as the first rains of the year arrive in Mauritania.

Climate crisis

Rising temperatures and extreme weather are having a huge impact on vulnerable communities already struggling to get the food they need.

Climate change is no longer a future threat. It’s happening now.

We see it in more frequent extreme weather like floods, droughts and storms. These destroy homes, habitats and livelihoods and they’re a leading cause of rising hunger levels around the world.

No nation, no matter how rich, is immune to the damage climate change is causing. Many of the worst affected countries are home to people who will find it difficult to adapt to the impacts of climate change due to poverty and inequality.

Extreme weather and hunger

Extreme climate-related disasters have doubled in the last 30 years.

In particular, droughts are driving a continued rise in the number of people going hungry. They lead to steep falls in food production, which means less income for small producers and higher food prices – putting a healthy diet beyond reach for the poorest people.

Sadly, countries across Latin America, Southeast Asia and Africa are experiencing more and more of them. Severe drought is a leading cause of undernutrition in more than a third of countries that have seen a rise in hunger levels in the last 15 years.

Play videoJenny, Action Against Hunger's country director in Pakistan, explains how Pakistani women are fighting back against climate change.

The Pakistani women leading the fight against climate change

In our 60 Second Challenge series, Jenny Ankrom, Country Director for Pakistan, tells us how rural women are leading the fight against malnutrition and climate change – taking control of their community's health.

Climate change, conflict and forced migration

Many countries experiencing the worst effects of the climate crisis are in regions dealing with long-term conflict.

This is particularly the case across East and West Africa, from Somalia to Nigeria, where conflict between states and non-state armed groups is raging in areas affected by extreme weather, making food production harder.

In the Sahel region of Africa, which includes countries such as Niger, Mali, Chad and Burkina Faso, the rainy seasons are becoming more erratic. Droughts are leading to a decrease in food production while floods are causing outbreaks of diseases like cholera.

At the same time, violence in the region is driving millions of people from their homes. Thousands of displaced people now have to share land with struggling host communities whose crop yields are falling.

As temperatures continue to rise, the impact of climate change on food production will only get worse. Unless we take urgent action, the rise in the number of displaced people affected by hunger and undernutrition will continue.

How we help people affected by climate change

We support families around the world who rely on farming and those whose livelihoods are at risk from climate change. Here are some examples of our work helping communities adapt to the climate crisis.

A group of herders in Mauritania. Their livelihoods have been affected by the climate crisis.

Senegal

In West Africa’s Sahel region, we’re supporting herders to use artificial intelligence (AI) and tele-detection to help find food for livestock and prepare for droughts, heatwaves, bushfires and even Covid-19 closures.

With support from the World Bank, we applied AI to create a unique system for real-time data collection and analytics for remote farmers – called the Pastoral Early Warning System (PEWS).

The AI analyses data and PEWS pushes out updates in French and other local languages to herders via radio, SMS and local bulletins every ten days. This helps herders to choose the best place to graze their cattle or spot signs of animal disease outbreaks.

So far, these tech-enabled alerts have reached more than 52,000 people in Senegal alone.

NigerA group of herders in Niger whose livelihoods have been affected by the climate crisis.

Niger

We’re training smallholder farmers to manage their land in a more holistic way. This means farming in a way that is more resilient to weather extremes, that gradually reverses soil degradation and improves crop and pasture productivity, while being kind on the environment.

Our work in Niger
The PhilippinesThe aftermath of a typhoon in The Philippines.

The Philippines

We’re helping local government authorities build climate data into their planning processes, helping to build early warning systems to alert vulnerable communities to imminent weather extremes . We’re also training farmers in new agricultural approaches that drive development, create food security, build resilience and drive down carbon emissions.

Our work in The Philippines

Why hunger?

Nutrition

An Action Against Hunger staff member screens a child for malnutrition in Mali.

Providing children with the nutrition they need means they can fulfil their potential and build a brighter, healthier future.

Conflict

South Sudanese refugees supported by an Action Against Hunger member of staff.

Most people facing hunger and malnutrition in the world today can be found in countries affected by conflict.

Gender inequality

A group of women supported by Action Against Hunger in Ethiopia.

Hunger affects everyone differently. But around the world, women and girls are most at risk of becoming malnourished.