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Climate Action and Nutrition: Pathways to Impact

Climate change and malnutrition are two of the greatest challenges facing humanity today, which are interconnected through food, water, social protection, and health systems. Responding to both climate change and malnutrition with integrated actions provides one solution to two of our biggest barriers to sustainable development.

This paper, prepared as a contribution to the Initiative on Climate Change and Nutrition (I-CAN), explores options for integrated actions jointly addressing climate change and malnutrition across food, water, social protection, and health systems. The paper: i) summarises each system’s importance to good nutrition, ii) describes the evidence on the interaction of each system with climate change, and III) presents response options for integrated actions that have the potential to benefit climate change and malnutrition.

The evidence compiled in this paper shows there is the potential for each of the systems to be nutrition-sensitive and climate-smart for healthy diets, safe food, and efficiently managed clean water for all.  This is likely to result in enhanced coping strategies and reduced illness from systems that significantly reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions, protect biodiversity, preserve natural resources and increase resilience.  Integrated actions can lead to positive outcomes on both climate and nutrition, with the support of key enablers identified in this paper. Overall, this creates a virtuous cycle of healthier people, and stronger communities that can drive sustainable development.

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