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Attention Peacekeepers: Climate Data Important for Fragile States

Nigerian navy Cmdr. Godffrey Kwetishe fills a weather balloon with helium (U.S. Navy photo by John Stratton)

Nigerian navy Cmdr. Godffrey Kwetishe fills a weather balloon with helium (U.S. Navy photo by John Stratton)

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) has issued a new report, Accessing and Using Climate Data and Information in Fragile, Data-Poor States. In the report, the authors Simon Mason, Andrew Kruczkiewicz, Pietro Ceccato and Alec Crawford do a fantastic job of bringing to light an overlooked aspect of conflict-ridden and fragile states: accessing and using climate data. The report lists numerous examples, including how weather forecasting was banned by the Taliban in Afghanistan, and how weather information gathering capabilities in Rwanda diminished after the genocide. The report also includes recommended actions for peace-building practitioners to avoid such gaps in the future. Worth a read.  (more…)

Study: Very hot temperatures correlated with greater risk of violence in East Africa?

A new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and led by John O’Loughlin of the University of Colorado, Boulder, looks at correlations between temperature and conflict in nine countries in East Africa (Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania and Uganda). The authors utilized data from over 16,000 conflicts that occurred between 1999-2009, and determined that “very hot” temperatures do indeed increase the risk of conflict, though “socioeconomic, political and geographic factors” are still the key main drivers. (more…)