Turn Down the Heat
Confronting the New Climate Normal
This third report in the Turn Down the Heat series covers three World Bank regions: Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC); the Middle East and North Africa (MENA); and parts of Europe and Central Asia (ECA). While covering a range of sectors, special attention is paid to projected impacts on food and energy systems, water resources, and ecosystem services. The report also considers the social vulnerability that could magnify or moderate the climate change repercussions for human well-being.
Selected Key Findings from the Regions:
Latin America and the Caribbean
The Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) region is highly heterogeneous in terms of economic development and social and indigenous history with a population of 588 million (2013), of which almost 80% is urban.
- Projections indicate that most dry regions get drier and wet regions get wetter.
- Massive loss of glaciers is projected in the Andes in a 2°C world (up to 90%) and almost complete glacier loss beyond 4°C.
- Increasing risks for agriculture as warming rises beyond 2°C. There is a clear negative signal for a large variety of crops with 2°C warming, including soybeans (up to a 70% yield decline in some areas of Brazil) and maize (up to a 60% yield decline in Brazil and Ecuador) by 2050 relative to a 1989–2009 baseline.
- Local food security is seriously threatened by the projected decrease in fishery catch potential
- An increase of approximately 40% in the frequency of the strongest north Atlantic tropical cyclones is projected for a 2°C world, and of 80% for a 4°C world, compared to present
- Extreme events will strongly affect the rural and urban poor who often reside in informal settlements in high-risk areas (e.g., flood plains and steep slopes)
The Middle East and North Africa
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is one of the most diverse regions in the world in economic terms, with per-capita annual GDP ranging from $1,000 in Yemen to more than $20,000 in the Arab Gulf States.
- Rainfall is predicted to decline by 20–40% in a 2°C world and by up to 60% in a 4°C world in parts of the region.
- With 70% of agricultural production being rainfed, the sector is highly vulnerable to temperature and precipitation changes and the associated potential consequences for food, social security, and rural livelihoods.
- Heat stress levels can approach the physiological limits of people working outdoors and severely undermine regional labor productivity, putting a burden on health infrastructure.
- The Maghreb countries of Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, and Libya have been identified as among the most exposed African countries in terms of total population affected by sea-level rise.
Europe and Central Asia
Europe and Central Asia (ECA) in this report covers 12 countries within Central Asia, the Western Balkans, and the Russian Federation. The analysis focuses on specific climate challenges related to the agriculture-water-energy nexus in Central Asia; climate extreme in the Western Balkans, and the forests in Russia.
- Crop productivity is expected to be negatively impacted by increased heat extremes and variability of supply/demand for water that poses substantial risks to irrigated agricultural systems. Rural populations that are especially dependent on agriculture for food are likely to be increasingly vulnerable.
- The risk of drought is high. Projections indicate a 20% increase in the number of drought days and a decrease in precipitation of about 20–30% in a 4°C world.
- Most crops are rain-fed and very vulnerable to projected climate change.
- A northward shift of the tree line is projected in response to warming
- In a 2°C world, the thawing of the permafrost is projected to increase methane emissions by 20–30%
Quelle: World Bank (2014): Turn Down the Heat: Confronting the New Climate Normal. Washington, DC: World Bank. License: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 IGO (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0 IGO).