Digital legal identity is key to climate and energy crisis response, UNDP argues

Activist Post Editor’s Note: And here is what the race to digital ID is really about — centralized management of resources, including humans.

By Abigail Opiah

In an era where legal identity is the gateway to essential services, 850 million people worldwide lack the means to establish theirs. This global identity gap, however, finds a potential bridge in the embrace of digitalization, with a major side benefit, a blog post by UNDP claims.

Digital legal identity stands as a cornerstone of digital public infrastructure, offering a pathway to inclusion and efficiency through interoperability among diverse systems.

Foundational registries like civil and national ID databases provide data for evidence-based policymaking. Yet, the integrity of this data relies on protection measures for privacy and security.

UNDP authors say sectors such as environment, energy, and social security are poised to benefit from this data. It supports risk management strategies in the face of disasters and the climate crisis, improving access to information for citizens regarding disaster and emergency response.

Amidst climate-induced disasters, targeted interventions informed by data offer multiple benefits, including predictive capabilities, preparedness efforts, and streamline response mechanisms to mitigate uncertainties. Additionally, leveraging data contributes to emission reduction initiatives, aiding in climate mitigation endeavors.

During disasters, digital identity plays a crucial role in tracking impacts, facilitating relief efforts, and optimizing energy responses. It aims to aid in allocating energy resources efficiently, maintaining essential services, and supporting emergency response teams. Additionally, it helps identify displaced populations, prioritizing assistance to vulnerable individuals and coordinating efforts across different contexts.

According to the blog, five benefits underscore the indispensability of data derived from Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS) and national ID systems in confronting the climate and energy crisis.

Digital legal identities for identifying the displaced enable governments to track population movements and provide support to displaced individuals. Digital IDs aid in registering disaster impacts, with the aim of offering insights into diverse impacts and facilitating targeted support.

They help in disaster preparedness and emergency management by storing personal information needed during emergencies, aiding in identifying vulnerable populations and critical infrastructure. Leveraging digital ID data can mitigate climate-related disasters by facilitating renewable energy incentives and optimizing energy distribution, improving energy system sustainability and resilience. And the blog notes that digital legal IDs can empower communities by enhancing participation in the energy sector, stimulating the transition to cleaner energy and enhancing resilience.

Source: Biometric Update

Abigail Opiah is a reporter for Biometric Update. Abigail has a masters in Broadcast Journalism from City, University of London and has previous experience in the tech space working for TechRadar and Capacity Media. Find her on LinkedIn.

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