Book Details

Climate Change in Zimbabwe Facts for Planners and Decision Makers

Anna Brazier

Format: E-Book


Published: 01/08/2015

Publisher: Konrad Adenauer Foundation.

City: Harare


Climate change in brief
Climate change is the long-term change in the Earth’s climate caused by the release of greenhouse gases – such as carbon dioxide [CO2] and methane [CH4]) – which trap heat in the atmosphere, causing the planet to become hotter (global warming). Greenhouse gases are released by human activities which use of fossil fuels (coal, oil and natural gas) as well as by large-scale commercial agriculture and deforestation (This is explained in more detail in chapter 2).
How will it affect us?
The average atmospheric and ocean temperatures across the Earth will rise due to climate change. This will cause widespread melting of snow and ice at the poles. The extra water from this melting will cause sea levels to rise and weather patterns to change across the planet. Extreme events, including storms, droughts and floods, will be more frequent. Everyone will be affected especially people in developing countries due to their location, their economic status and the burdens which they already bare including hunger, poverty and disease (This is explained in more detail in chapter 3). In Zimbabwe, climate change will cause average temperatures to rise by about 3°C before the end of this century. Annual rainfall could decline by between 5% and 18%, especially in the south. Rainfall will become more variable. There will be an increase in droughts, floods and storms. This will affect Zimbabwe’s food security, health, energy supply and the economy (This is explained in more detail in chapter 3).
What can we do about it?
Even if greenhouse gas emissions are stopped or reduced through concerted international efforts, many of the impacts of climate change will still affect us for decades. We must therefore develop strategies now to adapt to climate change. Primarily, we must protect the natural resources on which our lives and livelihoods depend by introducing better land management practices and increasing biodiversity (This is explained in more detail in chapter 4).
At the same time we must work together as a global community to reduce the concentration of greenhouse gases. It is hoped that this will prevent the most devastating impacts of future climate change and help us to repair some of the damage which has already been done (This is explained in more detail in chapter 5).

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