Climate Change Skeptics, Please Read: Storm's a Brewin'

Climate Change Linked to Increased Occurrence of Floods, Drought, Storms

Written by Green Chip Stocks
Posted December 2, 2010

Yet another report, released just over a week ago, details the effects of climate change and the growing number of natural disasters around the planet as a result.

As many as 200 million people worldwide stand to be displaced by natural disasters and climate change by 2050, the report said.

The latest report was released by Refugees International, a DC-based organization conducting research and working toward solutions to displacement crises, often the result of natural disasters. The organization advocates for lifesaving assistance and protection for displaced people.

The poorest countries will be affected the most by pending natural disaster…

And we can only imagine, after seeing the effects of earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, tsunami in Indonesia, and the destructive flooding in Pakistan this past summer, just how many people will be without homes, clothing, food, or potable water during and for months following disaster…

pakistan floodsPresident of Refugees International Michel Gabaudan said of the report, "The massive flooding in Pakistan is a wake-up call that starkly highlights the real threats we face from climate-related disasters.”

Many scientists point to climate change as the cause for the floods in Pakistan.

I wrote recently about India, and the threat posed by a rise in temperature due to climate change…

According to a report by the Indian Network for Climate Change Assessment, the temperature in India could increase by 3.8°F by as soon as 2030.

That’s enough to cause a drastic flux in weather patterns — affecting drought and rainfall patterns, threatening agriculture and the spread of disease.

And while there are skeptics, nearly all experts agree that the occurrence of natural disasters has increased, and the international community is ill-equipped to deal with the aftermath.

The fact is developing nations lack the finances, resources, and are more crisis-prone and will be disproportionately affected by natural disasters.

The countries that cannot afford to rebuild roads and bridges, that already lack access to clean drinking water, will suffer the most.

Gabaudan says it’s important to plan now for what will only be floods, droughts, storms, and earthquakes of greater frequency and intensity in the future.

“Given the high costs of responding to these catastrophic events, it is in our best interest to plan now for the massive human displacement they cause and protect those most at risk."

According to Alice Thomas, co-author of the Refugees International report, the floods in Pakistan this summer — which affected more than 20 million people ­­— give governments and humanitarians alike the chance to learn lessons and examine what to change in the event of a future natural disaster, to provide people with better response and aid…

"With some foresight and critical thinking, we can implement effective programs to prevent long-term displacement and get people back on their feet more quickly after a disaster occurs," Thomas said.

As Gabaudan told the Huffington Post, "The failure to address the threat of climate displacement could undermine the long-term stability of countries likely to experience increased floods, storms, droughts and other disasters," said Gabaudan, the Refugees International chief.

"Taking preventive steps now will strengthen these countries and provide support to the world's poorest people."


Note: The debate surrounding climate change has been covered by television’s talking heads, scientists, and the bourgeois in coffee bars around the world. Whether you “buy into” climate change as a reality or not, here are two pieces (1, 2) worth reading with some interesting points.