Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Rwanda and the climate crisis

Authorities in Rwanda have begun demolishing homes in the capital Kigali which they say are threatened by "climate dangers".
Officials say the destruction of hundreds of houses built on or near wetlands is necessary to protect people from flooding and landslides after unusually heavy rains. But residents complain that they have received no compensation so far.
The UN says the weather in Rwanda is becoming "more and more unpredictable". The country is said to be highly vulnerable to climate change. Rain-triggered disasters, including flash floods and landslides, have killed hundreds of people in East Africa in recent weeks and displaced millions.  Homes have been demolished, crops destroyed and roads swept away, hampering relief efforts in remote areas.
The effects of global warming on seasonal rainfall in East Africa are unclear. But as a rule of thumb, a warmer atmosphere can hold more water vapour and therefore has the potential to produce more rain, he says.
Weather experts say the East Africa rains have been enhanced by a phenomenon called the Indian Ocean Dipole which, when positive, can cause a rise in water temperatures in the Indian Ocean of up to 2C. 

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