Challenges for Studying Population-Environment Interactions in the Arab Region

Lutz W (1996). Challenges for Studying Population-Environment Interactions in the Arab Region. IIASA Working Paper. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: WP-96-100

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Abstract

Since the Arab region largely belongs to the arid climate zone, concerns of fresh water availability in the context of population changes have a long tradition and are well entrenched in the Arab culture. In the future, however, this region is likely to face unprecedented challenges which result from a combination of continued very rapid population growth, combined with the prospect of significant climate warming. This paper presents alternative population scenarios to 2100 which are based on different fertility, mortality and migration assumptions and show that the population of the Arab region is still likely to increase by a factor of more than four. A more extreme scenario combining slow fertility declines with rapid mortality improvements may even result in an eightfold increase by the end of the next century. On the climate side, different General Circulation Models (GCMs) anticipate for the region increases in average temperature of between 3.0 and 4.5 degrees Celsius under doubled CO2 conditions (likely to be reached during the second half of the next century). The combination of these two trends makes population-environment issues in the region a vital challenge.

Because appropriate action requires appropriate scientific analysis which in the field of population-environment interactions is almost entirely lacking, the second part of the paper presents the outline of a possible research strategy. The PDE (Population-Development-Environment) approach that has already been applied to several case studies is proposed as a comprehensive strategy to encourage an interdisciplinary discussion and a science-policy dialogue around the building of a computer-based simulation model of these interactions, which has proven to be a useful facilitating tool.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Working Paper)
Research Programs: World Population (POP)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:07
Last Modified: 22 Jul 2016 13:34
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/4927

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