Climate Change, Extreme Weather Fueling War

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#Climate #WeatherClimate Change, Extreme Weather Fueling War : A study just released suggests that extreme weather due to climate change could by fueling armed conflicts around the world especially in less than politically stable countries.

Weather, climate change driving war around the world?

There is little question that climate change is real and while the last two years’ temperatures could simply be an anomaly, they are the warmest two years on record.

In a new study recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers have showed that nearly 25% of armed conflicts in countries with diverse ethnic populations in the three decades spanning 1980 to 2010 occurred shortly after a drought, heatwave or other extreme weather event.

“We’ve been surprised by the extent that results for ethnic fractionalized countries stick out, compared to other country features such as conflict history, poverty, or inequality,” said Dr Jonathan Donges a Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research scientist and co-author of the new study.

“We think that ethnic divides may serve as a predetermined conflict line when additional stressors like natural disasters kick in, making multi-ethnic countries particularly vulnerable to the effect of such disastesrs,” he continued.

“It’s significant that you can make that statement—that nearly 25 percent of those conflicts coincided with some type of climate-related disaster.” “What’s much more important is that this number is highly statistically significant and robust,” Donges said. “You cannot explain it by chance.”

Afghanistan and Liberia are examples of these “ethnically fractionalized countries” the researchers wrote about in their paper. While culture and religion, or in the case of Afghanistan