There are multiple categories of drought; agricultural, meteorological, hydrological and socioeconomic. Climate change has exacerbated the frequency and intensity of drought. In Somalia droughts have caused an estimated 43?,000 more deaths compared with the mortality levels in 2015–2016.
There are no natural disasters, only natural hazards whose probability is being altered by the climate crisis. Extreme weather events together with the vulnerability and exposure of a population determine the impact of a disaster. Attribution studies provide a statement about how human greenhouse gas emissions have altered the intensity and frequency of an extreme event.
‘Global warming’ is defined by the International Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) as an increase in combined air and sea surface temperatures averaged over the globe over 30 years. Earth’s temperature is believed to have risen by 0.08° C per decade since 1880. Global warming reached about 1°C by 2020.
An anthrax outbreak raised the concern of ancient pathogens possibly reappearing as a result of very high temperatures and the thawing of the permafrost. Although global warming can definitely lead to the permafrost slowly unfreezing, this happens over very long periods of time and is linked to climate shifts rather than specific weather events, such as the high temperatures in 2016, which mostly affected the active layer on top of the permafrost, not the actual permafrost. There are multiple factors converging for the outbreak of anthrax, such as disrupted vaccination, overpopulation of reindeer, and the distribution of spores; not just the (supposed) thawing of the permafrost.
As one of life’s building blocks, phosphorus is an essential nutrient. The phosphorus cycle is tightly coupled with the nitrogen cycle, but is mostly driven by water transfer. Human activity has disturbed the phosphorus cycle, which impacts ecosystems.
The nitrogen cycle is the process by which nitrogen is transformed into nitrates, used by plants and animals in the creation of amino acids and eventually returned to the air. Through the burning of fossil fuels and the use of nitrogen-based fertilisers, humans have greatly increased the amount of nitrogen in the atmosphere. This excess of nitrogen is highly damaging to the environment, causing ocean dead zones and air pollution, among other things.
CO2 fertilisation effect refers to an increase in the photosynthesis process under heightened atmospheric CO2 levels. A stronger photosynthesis process removes more CO2 from the atmosphere, effectively acting as a negative feedback that slows the climate crisis.
This article examines the concept of a remaining carbon budget, and analyses different scenarios based on various data sets. Varying data sources result in different carbon budgets based on factors such as land use, and past carbon emissions. Even with this variance, it is clear that almost no country is on track to meet the Paris climate goals (SDG IISD 2019).