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Population and Climate Change Data Sheet

April 22, 2010

This global data sheet provides data on 15 key national-level population and climate change indicators for all countries of the world. It contains data tables, narrative text, and images explaining critical population-climate change relationships. By highlighting select demographic, health, socioeconomic, and climate change-related indicators for both industrialized and developing countries, the datasheet serves as a foundation for exploring the diversity of baseline conditions under which countries are facing climate change challenges. Specific indicators include total and projected population, total and per capita CO2 emissions, cars per 1000 population, forest cover, resilience rating, female participation in secondary school, unmet need for family planning, and percentage of population below international poverty line. Relationships among these variables suggest a comprehensive approach to development could help build climate change resilience and adaptive capacity, and accompanying text outlines policy options that can contribute to long-term sustainability in the face of climate change.

Funding Common Ground: Cost Estimates for International Reproductive Health

April 12, 2010

There are over a dozen estimates of the financial resources needed to improve reproductive health used by the reproductive health community. Lack of understanding of estimates currently in circulation can lead to fragmented advocacy and weak financial prioritization of reproductive health. Population Action International is releasing a report, Funding Common Ground: Cost Estimates for International Reproductive Health to help advocates and policy makers better understand the funding needed to achieve the ICPD and MDG goal of universal access to reproductive health. A clear sense of financial requirements is essential to carry out policy advocacy and plan to fulfill unmet needs.

The Shape of Things to Come: The Effects of Age Structure on Development

April 2, 2010

Today, the world has the largest generation of young people in history, with 3.6 billion people under the age of 30 worldwide. A population's age structure (the relative size of each age group) deeply affects development opportunities and plays a major role in security and governance challenges. In 2007, Population Action International (PAI) published The Shape of Things to Come: Why Age Structure Matters to a Safer, More Equitable World. Here, PAI updates and extends the analysis. Three case studies on Haiti, Yemen and Uganda examine the challenges specific to countries with very young age structures and recommend policy solutions.

The Effects of a Very Young Age Structure in Haiti: A Country Case Study

April 1, 2010

The devastating earthquake that struck Haiti in early January 2010 adds to the string of misfortunes in a country used to fighting adversity. Political instability and repeated natural disasters have compounded a failure to invest in its human resources and its environment and have prevented the country from achieving a sustainable development path. Haiti's demographic profile, most notably its very young age structure, affects all aspects of reconstruction efforts, from economic opportunities to security issues, political stability, gender equality and climate change adaptation. Haiti has the youngest age structure in the Caribbean; almost 70 percent of Haiti's people are under age 30. While young people represent an important asset for any country, they need opportunities in order to prosper. Haiti's demographic reality has and will have a profound impact on development in the country. Population Action International's report "The Shape of Things to Come" found that population age structure can influence a country's stability, governance and the well-being of its people. Countries with very young and youthful age structures -- those in which 60 percent or more of the population is younger than age 30 -- are the most likely to face outbreaks of civil conflict and autocratic governance. While the relationship between age structure and instability is not one of simple cause and effect, demographics do play an important role in mitigating or exacerbating a country's prospects for development.

The Effects of a Very Young Age Structure in Uganda: A Country Case Study

April 1, 2010

Uganda has the youngest age structure in the world, with 77 percent of its population under the age of 30. The population of Uganda is currently growing by about one million people per year, and given the force of demographic momentum, Uganda will see high rates of population growth for decades to come. Uganda's demographic situation impacts all aspects of its development, from economic growth to quality of education to health care provisions. Governance, political stability, security and adaptation to climate change are also deeply influenced by demographic mechanisms. Uganda's very young age structure is deeply tied to its security as well. In 2007, Population Action International (PAI) published "The Shape of Things to Come: Why Age Structure Matters to a Safer, More Equitable World". The report found that population age structure can influence a country's stability, governance and the well-being of its people. Countries with very young and youthful age structures -- those in which 60 percent or more of the population is younger than age 30 -- are the most likely to face outbreaks of civil conflict and autocratic governance. Although Uganda is making progress in some areas, the country's security and governance issues remain significant.

The Effects of a Very Young Age Structure in Yemen: A Country Case Study

April 1, 2010

Yemen has broken into the global political scene, with periodic terrorist attacks against foreign targets and its location as a base for al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula highlighting the country's geopolitical significance. Yemen has the most youthful age structure in the world outside of sub-Saharan Africa, and its demographic situation is acknowledged by its government and external partners alike as a major challenge to the country's continued development. Since 1980, Yemen's population has nearly tripled, from 8.4 million to 21 million. Women in Yemen have an average of 6.2 children. If this fertility level stays constant, Yemen is projected to have a population of 39 million by 2025. Despite cultural challenges, programs already in place have successfully partnered with religious and political leaders to promote reproductive health. However, there are concerns about how well relevant national policies are being implemented. In a tremendously difficult political and economic context, the government must yet prove its political will.

Meeting the Development and Health Needs of 215 Million Women: U.S. International Family Planning Goals

April 1, 2010

U.S. international family planning assistance is one of the great success stories in the history of U.S. development assistance. In 2007, 56.5 million women in the developing world were using modern contraception as a direct result of U.S. support. Many millions more have benefited indirectly from service improvements resulting from the guidance and technical expertise of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Unfortunately a large and growing need for family planning remains in many developing nations. While the world population continues to grow by 79 million people annually, 215 million women in developing countries seek to postpone childbearing, space births, or stop having children, but are not using a modern method of contraception. The United States can lead international efforts to meet the unmet need for family planning by appropriating $1 billion annually. The $1 billion figure is the U.S. fair share of developed country contributions necessary to address unmet need in the developing world and would also fulfill our historic commitments to the U.N. Millennium Development Goals.

Linking Population, Fertility and Family Planning with Adaptation to Climate Change: Views from Ethiopia

December 7, 2009

As global climate change unfolds, its effects are being felt disproportionately in the world's poorest countries and among the groups of people least able to cope. Many of the countries hardest hit by the effects of climate change also face rapid population growth, with their populations on track to double by 2050.Population Action International (PAI) and Miz-Hasab Research Center (MHRC), in collaboration with the Joint Global Change Research Institute (JGCRI), studied which groups are most vulnerable, what community members say they need to adapt, and the role of family planning and reproductive health in increasing resilience to climate change impacts.The study was carried out in 2008-2009 in peri-urban and rural areas of two regions in Ethiopia: the Oromia region and the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People's (SNNP) region.

A Measure of the Future: Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health Risk Index for the Pacific

December 7, 2009

The last two decades have seen a significant improvement in the sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) of Pacific Island women. Nonetheless, women continue to suffer death and injury from preventable reproductive health problems every year. The consequences of this ripple through Pacific families, communities, societies and economies. This fact challenges the governments of Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs), development organisations and civil society groups to work harder, to work faster, and to work more cooperatively, to-wards ensuring that all Pacific Island women can realise their full SRHR. A Measure of the Future builds on the 2007 Population Action International (PAI) study titled, A Measure of Survival: Calculating women's sexual and reproductive risk. A Measure of the Future provides a reproductive risk index and accompanying narrative that together outline the SRHR issues that Pacific Island women continue to face. A Measure of the Future was developed for Pacific policy makers and SRHR advocates to contribute to their informed action to overcome these issues, both at a national and regional level.

Why Family Planning and Reproductive Health are Critical to the Well-Being of Youth

October 23, 2009

An unprecedented number of young people are entering their reproductive years, most of whom live in the developing world. U.S. policy makers should assist in effortS to ensure that youth worldwide are able to make informed decisions about their sexuality and receive the family planning and reproductive health care that they require. The U.S. should support these efforts by providing adequate funding for international family planning and reproductive health programs. Young people's access to family planning and reproductive health is a fundamental right. The international community recognizes that youth must have access to comprehensive, evidence-based, scientifically accurate, and youth friendly family planning and reproductive information, services, and supplies. The 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Programme of Action endorsed by 179 countries identifies young people's reproductive rights as a priority. Youth were also a key consideration in the 2009 review of the ICPD.

Making Aid Effectiveness Work for Family Planning and Reproductive Health

September 15, 2009

This Population Action International Working Paper analyzes the five principles of aid effectiveness -- country ownership, alignment, harmonization, managing for results, and mutual accountability -- from a family planning and reproductive health perspective. It also describes how the Paris Declaration has changed the ways of managing and delivering aid; highlights entry points and obstacles for champions working to improve funding and policies; and makes recommendations for civil society organizations, governments and donors.

A Measure of Commitment: Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health Risk Index for Sub-Saharan Africa

September 2, 2009

In 2008 the number of African women who died from pregnancy and child birth was much higher than the number of casualties from all the major conflicts in Africa combined. Maternal mortality continues to be the major cause of death among women of reproductive age (15-49) in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Most of these women die from complications that can often be effectively treated in a health system that has adequate skilled personnel, a functioning referral system and can respond to obstetric emergencies when they occur. This report looks at the performance of Sub-Saharan African countries in meeting reproductive health targets in 47 countries and ranks them using a set of ten indicators in order of the highest to lowest risk. It highlights the need to increase the level of investment in reproductive health, step up policy reform and implementation, expand access to services in rural areas, strengthen health systems, promote the realization of rights and abolish retrogressive cultural practices that perpetuate gender inequities and put the lives of women and girls at risk.