Weather specialists warn that climate change will advance at such a rate that many lands we know today will be significantly changed. Intensified droughts and heat waves will hit the Mediterranean regions and turn them into deserts by 2100. Most of the affected areas are located in South Europe.
The new study accounting for the massive change due to the end of the century was conducted by the Aix-Marseille University in France. The researchers show that the stated regions have already experienced significant temperature rise over the past two hundred years. So taking into consideration the current phenomenon, it comes as no surprise that global warming will turn the Mediterranean regions into deserts before our century ends.
The research from the French specialist’s reveals than the areas in Southern Portugal and Spain will be severely affected by global warming. The islands belonging to Italy will also be hit by the massive heat waves. Moreover, territories in Algeria, Morocco, Syria and Turkey are also facing the threat of becoming deserts within the next decades.
The process of desertification implies small supplies of water, loss of vegetation and the disappearance of wildlife species that can’t stand the oppressive heat. The Mediterranean regions are famous for their olive crops, pines, and oaks, which can’t grow in deserts.
The scientists investigated how the climate was in the past. Their research was based on pollen and vegetation. They explain that the presence of spruce and fir trees suggests cool climates, while oak trees are associated with warmer temperatures.
The authors of the new study also noted that the Earth hadn’t experienced such drastic changes in ten thousand years. They explain that the situation can only be avoided if greenhouse gas emissions are curbed, and other pollution-causing activities are stopped.
The researchers are concerned that these massive climate and relief changes will affect social stability. History and previous studies accounted for cases when populations left their homelands because of unproductive fields and other weather related phenomena. What’s more, a recent study showed that the drought in Syria which lasted from 2007 to 2010 was one of the factors which contributed to the civil war.
More and more studies accounting for the importance of the Paris agreement on climate change are appearing. The research at the Aix-Marseille University is one of them.
The new report from the French scientists on the Mediterranean regions was published in Science.
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