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Matt Damon: Climate change will most impact ‘the poorest people’

Matt Damon: Climate change will most impact ‘the poorest people'

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Tuesday called climate change a "crisis multiplier" that will exacerbate "droughts and flooding" and spur global migration, as the military alliance announced efforts to incorporate climate change mitigation into its mission.

In a new interview, Oscar-winning actor and water equity philanthropist Matt Damon said the link between climate change and water scarcity will deepen over the coming years and predominantly impact the world's most impoverished communities.

When asked about the connection between climate change and water scarcity, Damon pointed to low-income people in developing countries. Currently, 2.2 billion people worldwide lack access to safe drinking water.

"Those are the people that we're dealing with, those are the people that we're trying to reach, and those are the people who are going to feel the effects of [climate change] more than anybody," says Damon, who co-founded the nonprofit organization Water.org in 2009 and WaterEquity in 2017.

"It's always going to fall to the poorest people on Earth to bear the brunt of these things more than anybody," he adds. "That's the connection."

Climate observers expect water scarcity to worsen significantly over the coming decades. In the early to mid-2010s, 1.9 billion people, or 27% of the global population, lived in areas at risk of a severe water shortage, according to a United Nations report released last year. By 2050, that figure will increase to somewhere between 2.7 billion and 3.2 billion people.

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