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Carbon Emissions Drop as UN launches Response and Recovery Fund

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Mariana Marañón-Laguna
President, Model United Nations, NMSU

April 14, 2020

Per the data gathered by the World Health Organization, as of 14 April 2020, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases is nearing 2 million, including approximately 120,000 confirmed deaths. Despite these staggering numbers and the fact that the pandemic is provoking the worst recession for “both advanced economies and emerging market and developing economies” since the Great Depression, according to the International Monetary Fund, here are some good news to help keep things in perspective.

The Global Carbon Project estimates that carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions could drop to a historic low since World War II as a result of the lockdown. UN Environment Programme Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, Inger Andersen, warns that, “visible, positive impacts – whether through improved air quality or reduced greenhouse gas emissions – are but temporary, because they come on the back of tragic economic slowdown and human distress.” To make emission decline long-lasting, it is paramount that the international community begins coordinating actions that will lead to serious structural reforms pertaining to production and consumption habits. Andersen highlights that there is great opportunity in the stimulus packages that diverse nations are providing to encourage a transition to a green economy, which can catalyze the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.  

COVID-19’s presence continues to unite UN agencies, governments, the private sector and communities to fight the pandemic, specially in the developing world. In low- and middle-income countries, the UN implemented a new multi-partner Trust Fund for COVID19 Response and Recovery. In Nigeria, the Trust Fund has helped mobilize medical supplies to treat coronavirus patients. Other coordinated actions with the UN include helping countries prepare a response plan before any COVID-19 cases are detected, such as in Malawi; deploying communication experts to help government entities share information on the pandemic in the cases of Uzbekistan and China; and supporting diverse home-schooling needs in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Gambia, and Zimbabwe.

The world is facing challenging and uncertain times but it is important to remain hopeful that things are and will continue getting better!


New Post: World Health Organization impacted by US funding decision


Posted April 17, 2020

Ana Maldonado
Treasurer, Model United Nations
New Mexico State University


April 16, 2020


The World Health Organization has mobilized prevention guidelines, advanced research and opened the doors for potential treatments against the novel coronavirus that has infected over 2 million and killed over 130,000 people worldwide. Although the WHO has played a significant role in the battle against COVID-19, a recent decision executed by President Trump has mandated the withdrawal of US funding to the WHO. This decision poses a concern over the effect that it will have in the fight against the Coronavirus. The decision to withdraw funding arose from accusations by President Trump against the WHO of mismanaging and covering up the spread of the virus and not responding quickly to the crisis. The US allocates approximately $400 million dollars in funding, representing about 15% of the total budget of the WHO. Without such funding, the WHO faces significant challenges in carrying out vaccination campaigns, responding to health emergencies and providing medical support worldwide. The WHO has responded to the US decision, noting that it alerted the world to coronavirus on January 5, 2020.

There is currently no established course of treatment against COVID-19, and various studies have provided deeper insight on the deadly effects of the virus. According to Dr. Panagis Galiatsatos at Johns Hopkins University, the presence of the virus within the body signals an immunological response in order to attack the virus effectively and engage in recovery from infection. However, it has been deduced that a possible cytokine storm, a lethal overdrive of immunological responses in the body, is a main factor in significant rates of mortality in all ages. Although the US has the highest infection and fatality rate in the entire world, infection rates have recently gone down, while similar trends have been observed in various countries such as Italy, France, Iran and among others. As the scientific community and other entities across the world are actively searching for solutions against the virus, it is important to follow health and safety precautions in order to minimize the spread of the virus which can have an effect on anyone.