By 2100, Spain will mostly be a desert, according to French experts. The whole planet should take climate change seriously, but according to a team of researchers, Spaniards should be a bit more concerned than other nations.
This week, scientists from the Aix-Marseille University in France published a paper in the journal Science where they explained that data and patterns predict that by 2100 the southern portion of Spain will become a desert.
Researchers, Joel Guiot and Wolfgang Cramer, said they based their prediction on computer models and more than 10,000 years of data that include “pollen records to gauge the effect that temperatures had on plant life.”
The authors of the study revealed that current rate of greenhouse gas emissions will eventually destroy the ecosystem in southern Spain and Sicily. The scientists believe that the temperature will rise nearly 5º Celsius in the next 80 years, which will lead to prolonged periods of drought. The drought could force mass migrations of people.
It is worth noting that the researchers did not take “in the environmental impact of human activity in the Mediterranean basin” into consideration in their study. Guiot said:
“The Med is very sensitive to climatic change, maybe much more than any other region in the world. A lot of people are living at the level of the sea, it also has a lot of troubles coming from migration. If we add additional problems due to climate change, it will be worse in the future.”
“The real impact of climate change on Mediterranean ecosystems, which are considered a hot spot of biodiversity, could be worse because the study did not look at other human impacts, such as forests being turned over to grow food. The effect of the human is to deforest, to replace with agriculture and so on. You change the vegetation cover, the albedo, the humidity in the soil, and you will emphasize the drought when you do that. If you have the [direct] human impact, it will be worse.”
The experts do think that the COP 21 climate agreement signed in Paris last December can reign climate change and save southern Spain. Guiot stated:
“The main message is really to maintain at less than 1.5º C.For that, we need to decrease the emissions of greenhouse gases very quickly, and start the decreasing now, and not by 2020, and to arrive at zero emissions by 2050 and not by the end of the century.”
Critics say this is just a piece of propaganda.