The impacts of climate change

Droughts in the Masai region of Africa.

THE LAST two chapters have detailed the climate change in terms of temperature and rainfall that we can expect during the twenty-first century because of human activities. To be useful to human communities, these details need to be turned into descriptions of the impact of climate change on human resources and activities. The questions to which we want answers are: how much will sea level rise and what effect will that have?; how much will water resources be affected?; what will be the impact on agriculture and food supply?; will natural ecosystems suffer damage?; how will human health be affected? and can the cost of the likely damage be estimated? This chapter considers these questions.1

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