Middle East and North Africa May Soon Be Uninhabitable Due to Climate Change
Rising sea levels due to melting ice sheets may not be the only dangerous effect of global warming. A new study suggests that the continuous rise in temperature brought by climate change may soon turn the Middle East and North Africa into scorching terrain uninhabitable by humans.
According to the study published in the journal Climate Change, even if the Paris Agreement on Climate Change successfully limits the global warming to two degrees Celsius every year, it will not be enough to prevent the rapid warming in Middle East and North Africa.
At present, Middle East and North Africa are already experience intense summer, but according to the researchers there is a high possibility that the temperature their can increase at a rate two times faster than the average pace of global warming. This means that by the middle of the century the daytime temperature of Middle East and North Africa can reach up to 46 degrees Celsius and will not fall below 30 degrees Celsius during night time, while midday temperature could be as high as 50 degrees Celsius.
The increasing temperature in Middle East and North Africa can also bring about tenfold increase in the number of heat waves and their duration. At present, heat waves can last about 16 days, but researchers predict that heat waves in the coming years can last about 80 extremely hot days.
To have a better understanding of the possible effects of climate change to the Middle East and North Africa, researchers develop two models. In the first model, global warming are controlled by the reductions of greenhouse gases, while the second model has no changes in the rate of global warming.
Researchers discovered that there is not much of a difference between the two models and that Middle East and North Africa will be facing scorching doom no matter what.
In addition to the rising temperature and heat waves, increasing air pollution caused by desert dust blown by the wind can greatly damage the environmental conditions of the two lands making it impossible for people to survive.
"In future, the climate in large parts of the Middle East and North Africa could change in such a manner that the very existence of its inhabitants is in jeopardy," said Jos Lelieveld, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry and Professor at the Cyprus Institute, in a statement.
As a result, more than 500 million people living in Middle East and North Africa will be forced to leave their homes.