About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us

Global Climate Change May Possibly Destabilize Populations and Governments

by Hannah Punitha on August 24, 2008 at 4:07 PM
Font : A-A+

 Global Climate Change May Possibly Destabilize Populations and Governments

International-security experts have suggested that climate-change-related damage to global ecosystems and the resulting competition for natural resources may increasingly serve as triggers for wars and other conflicts in the future.

According to Jurgen Scheffran, a research scientist in the Program in Arms Control, Disarmament and International Security and the Center for Advanced BioEnergy Research at the University of Illinois, "The impact of climate change on human and global security could extend far beyond the limited scope the world has seen thus far."


In a survey of recent research published earlier this summer in the 'Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists', Scheffran did critical analysis of four trends identified in a report by the German Advisory Council on Global Change as among those most possibly destabilizing populations and governments.

They were: degradation of freshwater resources, food insecurity, natural disasters and environmental migration.

He also cited last year's report by a working group of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change indicating that climate change would affect species and ecosystems worldwide, from rainforests to coral reefs.

In his analysis, Scheffran noted that the number of world regions vulnerable to drought was expected to rise.

"Water supplies stored in glaciers and snow cover in major mountain ranges such as the Andes and Himalayas also are expected to decrease," he said.

"Most critical for human survival are water and food, which are sensitive to changing climatic conditions," he added.

According to Scheffran, the degradation of these critical resources, combined with threats to populations caused by natural disasters, disease and crumbling economic and ecosystems, could ultimately have "cascading effects."

"Environmental changes caused by global warming will not only affect human living conditions but may also generate larger societal effects, by threatening the infrastructures of society or by inducing social responses that aggravate the problem," he said.

"The associated socio-economic and political stress can undermine the functioning of communities, the effectiveness of institutions, and the stability of societal structures. These degraded conditions could contribute to civil strife, and, worse, armed conflict," he added.

In fact, according to Scheffran, there's evidence that such dramas are already playing out on the world stage.

"Large areas of Africa are suffering from scarcity of food and fresh water resources, making them more vulnerable to conflict," he said.

"Other regions of the world - including the Middle East, Central Asia and South America - also are being affected," he added.

With so much at stake, Scheffran recommends multiple strategies for forestalling otherwise insurmountable consequences.

Among the most critical, according to him, is for governments to incorporate measures for addressing climate change within national policy.

Beyond that, he advocates a cooperative, international approach to addressing concerns.

Source: ANI

News A-Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Top 7 Benefits of Good Oral Hygiene
Healthy and Safer Thanksgiving 2021
Long-Term Glycemic Control - A Better Measure of COVID-19 Severity
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Health Effects of Global Warming Global Warming 

Recommended Reading
How to Boost People Participation in Environment Protection Programs?
People are more likely to help save the environment when they are told about others' participation ....
Do Not Underestimate the World's Ponds in Trapping Carbon
A new insight has shown that the world's ponds are capable of absorbing the same amount of carbon .....
Malaysian Environmentalists Oppose Warrior Mosquito Plan to Combat Dengue
Environmentalists have condemned a trial plan to deploy millions of genetically modified mosquitoes ...
Health Effects of Global Warming
Greenhouse effect causes excessive heat to build up in the earth’s atmosphere causing global warming...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use