A new study published in Nature, authored by 11 internationally recognised experts on climate and military conflicts has looked at the impact of the global increase in temperature on the incidence of armed conflicts.
The research team, consisting of American, Belgian, Swedish, German, French and British scientists working at major research institutions around the world, have looked at the optimistic scenario involving 2 °C, and the much more pessimistic one involving 4 °C of warming.
According to their study, over the last one hundred years there was at most a 5 percent chance of natural phenomena (drought, floods or heat waves) causing armed conflict somewhere in the world. However, along with rising food prices, global warming also causes depletion of water reserves and increasingly extreme weather anomalies. The greater the risk of losing access to basic resources, the higher the level of violence in any given region.
Currently, the global average temperature is 1 °C higher than it was before the industrial revolution, so whichever scenario is actually realised in the future, the researchers advise the potential adversaries in future conflicts to start coordinating peaceful solutions now.
According to a new report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that focuses on the interaction between climate change, desertification and food security, if present land use habits are maintained, the planet’s capacity to produce food will drop drastically.
The EU is contributing a further 50 million euro to alleviate drought damage in a number of Eastern and Central African countries. According to estimates, more than 4 million children and about 3 million pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers are undernourished in the region.
According to a report from the World Resources Institute, 17 countries are facing extremely high water stress, from India through Israel to Botswana. Many of the countries in question – which, collectively, are home to a quarter of the world’s population – are in the Middle East and North Africa.
Drought in the South African country that largely relies on hydroelectric power is causing not only shortages of drinking water but also power outages of up to 16 hours a day in the capital.
The water yield of the River Nile is becoming increasingly erratic as a result of climate change, which may have very grave consequences for Egypt.
Unprecedented droughts, heat waves claiming more than a hundred lives: the summer of 2019 has made it clear for the whole world that India is in big trouble. How will climate change shape the future of the country?
Climate change is increasingly making itself felt in Europe, too: flash floods, heat waves, droughts and forest fires are on the rise on the continent.
Water shortages represent one of the most severe consequences of global warming, impacting growing numbers of people. In 2018, the Cape Town water crisis made global news. This year so far, the situation is the worst in India: millions are struggling to get water day after day.
Drought had already reduced the water yield of many natural waters in Germany drastically last year, but this year, due to the record heat wave sweeping across Europe, experts are warning about the possibility of actual water shortages in some areas.
The Indian water shortage resulting from unprecedented drought intensifies already significant social inequality.