Children play with kites in a waste area in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on Sept. 15, 2019. Photo: Syed Mahamudur Rahman/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Every 5 seconds a child under 15 years old died in 2018, mostly from preventable causes, according to the latest mortality trends report from 2 UN agencies.

The big picture: UNICEF and the United Nations Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation (UNIGME) found the total number of deaths among children and adolescents under 15 years old has dropped by 56% since 1990 — from about 14.2 million to 6.2 million in 2018. Causes of death include treatable infectious diseases, nutritional causes, drowning, burns and injuries.

The impact: Approximately 52 million children under 5 years old are projected to die between 2019 and 2030, according to the report, a decrease from 2017's projection of 60 million children in that age group. About half of those children would be newborns.

  • 4 out of 5 of those deaths under age 15 would occur in sub-Saharan Africa and Central and Southern Asia in 2019–2030.
  • If all countries reach the UN's child survival target of 25 or fewer deaths per 1,000 live births by 2030, 11 million lives under age 5 could be saved — more than half in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Maternal deaths are currently 50 times higher for women in sub-Saharan Africa than in high-income countries.

Where it stands: Countries with high to very high mortality rates for children under 5 largely made faster progress in reducing mortality since 2000 than during the 1990s. Sabrina Sidhu, a UNICEF spokesperson, said that change could broadly be attributed to increased vaccinations for preventable diseases like measles and pneumonia and stronger prioritization of the issue.

  • Sub-Saharan Africa remains the region with the highest mortality rate of under-5 year olds in the world.

What they're saying: “We must support countries as they move toward universal health coverage to ensure that all women and children get the care they need through functional quality primary health care systems," said Muhammad Pate, global director for health, nutrition and population at the World Bank Group.

  • “We are pleased to see a reduction in maternal deaths, but the decline is far from adequate,” said Natalia Kanem, executive director of UNFPA. “Hundreds of thousands of women continue to die each year from preventable causes. This is unacceptable."

Go deeper: Children worldwide are less likely to die young than ever before

Go deeper

23 mins ago - World

Trump announces historic normalization of ties between Israel and UAE

Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu, Trump and UAE Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed. Photo: Artur Widak/NurPhoto; Samuel Corum; Odd Andersen/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump announced a "historic" deal Thursday which will see Israel and the UAE open full diplomatic relations and Israel suspend its annexation plans in the West Bank.

Why it matters: This is a major breakthrough for Israel, which does not have diplomatic recognition in many Middle Eastern countries but has been steadily improving relations in the Gulf, largely due to mutual antipathy toward Iran.

Updated 45 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Trump vows to block stimulus funding for mail-in voting and USPS

President Trump on Thursday told Fox Business' Maria Bartiromo that Democratic demands to fund mail-in voting and the U.S. Postal Service in ongoing coronavirus stimulus negotiations were a non-starter.

Why it matters: Trump directly linked Democrats' desired $3.6 billion for mail-in voting and $25 billion for the USPS to his continued baseless claims that increased mail-in voting will lead to widespread voter fraud.

Wind and solar power hit record global market shares in first half of 2020

Reproduced from Ember; Chart: Axios Visuals

A steep decline in coal-fired power combined with rising wind and solar output drove the carbon-free sources to record global market share in the first half of 2020, per a new analysis from the environmental think tank Ember.

Why it matters: The report shows how the coronavirus pandemic is speeding the ongoing shakeup of the global power mix — but also how it's occurring too slowly to reach international climate goals.