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Israel Climate Change Impact: How Scientists Say Global Warming Will Hurt

Image: Israel Climate Change Impact: How Scientists Say Global Warming Will Hurt
An Israeli farmer inspects the wheat crop harvested from fields along the border with the Gaza Strip on April 30, 2008 in the fields near Kibbutz Be'eri in southern Israel. (David Silverman/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 16 Dec 2014 06:52 PM

Scientists are marking the effects of climate change in Israel and making predictions about how global warming may affect the nearly 9 million people in the nation.

Summers have become slightly warmer in Israel in recent decades with heat waves coming more frequently and with greater intensity, according to an article in the Israel Journal of Health Policy Research.

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Extreme weather events, including heat waves, floods, and storms, could cause direct and indirect effects on human life in Israel, including death, disease, and injury, according to the report. Climate change also could lead to rising food prices.

Global warming also could increase political instability in the region, as water shortages and other effects take a toll, The Jerusalem Post reported in October.

Israel produces less than 45 percent of its calorie intake, making the country vulnerable to food markets, the Post said.

Pressures from outside the area also are a concern.

“Given its proximity to Africa, Israel is surely in the ‘front line’ for the climate refugees which the anticipated droughts and floods in Africa will produce,” professor Alon Tal of the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev’s Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research said, according to the Post.

“And while building a tall fence on the Sinai border surely made sense, it’s not clear that Israel has a coherent refugee policy or way of acting preemptively in response to the human deluge.”

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Rising sea levels could cause widespread flooding in Israel, along with mosquito-borne illnesses, according to a November 2013 article in The Jerusalem Post.

A report by Knowledge Center for Climate Change at the request of the Environmental Protection Ministry said rising sea levels and river flooding could put 2.5 million people in seaside areas at risk and threaten another 2.8 million near rivers, the Post reported.

Rising temperatures and reduced rain also could take a toll on groundwater supplies, making water conservation a necessity, the Post said.

Some of these steps already are in place. Much of Israel’s drinking water comes from desalination, and recycled wastewater is used in agriculture, stated the Post's October article.

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Scientists are marking the effects of climate change in Israel and making predictions about how global warming may affect the nearly 9 million people in the nation.
israel, climate, warming, hurt
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2014-52-16
Tuesday, 16 Dec 2014 06:52 PM
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