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The UK government recently released the first in a series of assessments that far more governments should be conducting – a climate change risk assessment. It’s a long document, and a number of people are talking about it, so we’ll just include a short list of the assessment’s “key messages” below. Despite the report’s recognition that “gaps in evidence” of climate risk still exist, it recommends robust action for risk management, demonstrating that being prepared does not require 100% certainty.
The devastation caused by Thailand’s recent floods is vast. Two million people across 26 provinces were affected by the event, at least 527 people were killed, and a quarter of the country’s important rice crop may have been decimated. But beyond these headlines, the flood waters present a very harsh lesson in resilience. Climate change, weather, geography and politics all conspired to teach this lesson – but not just to Thailand. It is a warning to a world facing myriad risks in the ecological landscape – risks that are exacerbated by the volatility of political institutions, and the uncertainties that come with them. The challenge, for Thailand and the globe, will be to make the task of managing these risks impervious to the politics of the day, and responsive to the challenges of the future. (more…)
Terrorism, Taliban, drones, attacks, floods. These are a few of the words frequently seen in news headlines about Pakistan these days. Two words you will rarely see are “climate” and “change.” While statistically significant correlations between climate change and single weather events, like the one that caused the recent flooding in Pakistan, are difficult to come by, it is worth pausing to consider the effects that projected climate shifts in the region, such as a more erratic monsoon season, might have on a state with such a volatile mix of security problems and natural disasters. (more…)