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Now that summer is on its way, Lebanon is bracing itself for a severe drought that will negatively impact food and water security. A few factors combined will likely create severe problems this summer, as temperatures start to rise. First, Lebanon has had a record dry winter. As the country relies on wet winters for most of its precipitation, this is a real problem. The average precipitation from December to March is around 812 mm, while this season only 413 mm has fallen, almost half of the average. Not only has the rain stayed away, but a significant influx of Syrian refugees into the country is increasing demand for water and food. There are now over a million Syrian refugees in Lebanon, which equals one quarter of the resident population (specifically, there are 220 Syrian refugees for every 1,000 Lebanese residents). (more…)
The London School of Economics’ Middle East Centre, in concert with Birzeit University in Palestine, is launching a new project titled “Transboundary Climate Security: Climate Vulnerability and Human Security in the Jordan River Basin,” which will examine “climate vulnerable rural communities” in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory. According to the researchers: (more…)