Global climate indicators, risks and the Sustainable Development Goals, visually mapped


By Valentine Haran, Claire Ransom, and Omar Baddour

There is emerging scientific literature on climate change, risk and policy action. However, the interdisciplinary nature of the research has resulted in difficulties for stakeholders to quickly and easily find information on climate change as it relates to ecosystems, populations and development. We present a mapping tool that connects the seven World Meteorological Organization (WMO) state of the climate indicators to climate change impacts and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The WMO indicators were chosen for their clarity, relevance for a range of audiences, and ability to be updated using internationally agreed and published methods with open access and high-quality data. Each indicator represents key aspects of the climate system linked to various associated risks identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the academic community. Systemically mapping the relationships between the WMO climate indicators and related risks to show how climate can affect the achievement of specific SDGs, with clear visual representations, provides stakeholders with a new tool to better grasp the interconnected and complex nature of how climate change threatens sustainable development.