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By Christian Porth
Special to The Daily Star
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
BEIRUT: "We don't need more conferences or reports to tell us [about climate change] anymore, but rather we need a drastic change in the lifestyles of modern human beings," Habib Maalouf, head of the Lebanese Environment Party, told journalists at a news conference in the Movenpick Hotel in Raoche on Tuesday.

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) organized the news conference to launch the 2007 Human Development Report.

The report, which has been published yearly by the UNDP since 1990, this year focused on the theme "Fighting Climate Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World."

Habib Maalouf, in the spirit of the theme of the report, said that "the human community is environmentally connected and we must work together to help ourselves."

Claiming climate change to be the defining human development challenge of the 21st century, the report says that climate change is not some futuristic scenario but rather is already upon us all. The report cites as evidence the increased occurrences of destabilizing weather events, like droughts, floods and violent storms.