UN Reporting on Climate Change: A Talk with UNESCO’s Jan Lundius and Journalist Umar Manzoor Shah

Climate change is one of the most discussed topics of our time. Professionals, experts, politicians, and advocates have spread awareness of the dangers of climate change and made predictions for the future if nothing is done to stop it.

On March 27, 2024, two experts were invited to JCU for an online lecture/discussion on their findings on climate change. This event was organized by Career Services and co-sponsored by the Frank J. Guarini School of Business.

Umar Manzoor Shah (left), Jan Lundius (right)

Journalist Umar Manzoor Shah, an Environmental Communicator, Writer, and Translator from Kashmir, India, has spoken about the unsaid truths of rural villages and towns in his home country. He spent nine years of his life reporting on climate change and its disastrous effects, such as the agrarian crises, water scarcity, surging temperatures, and farmer suicides in India. He mentioned the state of global air report in 2020, which estimated 1.7 million premature deaths in India in 2019 due to household and ambient air pollution. Further, over 10,000 farmers ended their lives because of the inability to pay back local loans due to climate change. After overcoming several challenges to gather information and spread awareness, Shah familiarized himself with the farmers’ struggles. He emerged with a powerful intent to help his nation, by exposing the people to modern harvesting strategies and bringing aid from non-governmental organizations.

Jan Lundius, a Swedish writer and former Programme Specialist at UNESCO as well as an expert in social and anthropological research, presented his findings on, “environmental degradation and climate change as the biggest threats to human survival and wellbeing.” Animals and wildlife are no longer able to properly survive in water, tornadoes, and hurricanes are getting worse, and temperatures are rising. Due to these changes, over 120 million people are being pushed into poverty. Lundius highlights the most disappointing part of all of this in his research: it is incredibly difficult to even begin implementing laws to protect the environment and fight against climate change. Doing so is not in the interests of governments and large corporations.

(Alena Sazonova)