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Climate change is both global in scope and unprecedented in scale and has been described by the UN as ‘the defining issue of our time’. There has been scientific consensus that human activity is causing climate change for some time, with the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change confirming that it is ‘unequivocal’ that human activity has warmed the atmosphere, land and oceans. There is also substantial evidence surrounding the impacts of climate change, with evidence of it already ‘disrupting national economies and affecting lives’. Climate change threatens food, water and energy security and poses acute risks to lives and livelihoods through extreme weather events, especially heatwaves, droughts, cyclones and sea level rise.

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