United Nations (UN)

Global child mortality rate continues decline

In this image, a boy in a bright shirt carries a kite while running over a field of garbage.
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.

Amid oil market chaos, United Nations preps for major climate change summit

Illustration of Greek myth of Sisyphus pushing earth up mountain
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres sought to underscore the urgency of climate change on Wednesday, even as other topics grabbed the spotlight during a press conference ahead of a major UN summit next week.

Why it matters: Given both the cause and effect of climate change are decades in the making, the issue often gets crowded out of the top of diplomatic agendas when more imminent crises emerge. In Wednesday’s case, the conversation was dominated by the weekend attacks on Saudi Arabian oil infrastructure — which produces the very products helping warm Earth’s temperature.