Climate and energy

Women’s cooperative group in Leparua, Isiolo County, Kenya. CAFOD partner Caritas Isiolo has supplied the group with a greenhouse and a solar-powered water  pump, as well as training in how to grow and market tomatoes.

Climate change poses a huge threat to poverty eradication. Evidence from CAFOD’s 42 partner countries shows that a changing climate is making it more difficult for poor communities to lift themselves out of poverty. 

Pope Francis has called climate change “a global problem with grave implications: environmental, social, economic, political and for the distribution of goods.” It is “one of the principal challenges facing humanity in our day”. As such, climate change calls for “an integrated approach to combating poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded, and at the same time protecting nature" – or “integral ecology” (Laudato Si’ or Care for our Common Home). 

The most urgent change needed is to shift from polluting fossil fuels to more sustainable and efficient energy systems. This shift must also benefit the billions of people who currently do not have modern energy. As the new Sustainable Development Goal 7 on energy recognises, universal access to affordable, reliable and safe energy by 2030 is crucial to end poverty and for sustainable development.

Latest research: CAFOD asked the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) to analyse the latest spending figures (2009-13) for the UK’s support for energy in developing countries to see how current spending aligns with the UK’s climate and poverty reduction objectives. Read the findings on UK support for energy in developing countries.

For more about CAFOD’s policy work on climate change, integral ecology and sustainable energy for everyone, see below.

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