August 19, 2022

In the Middle East, scientists are urging a quick transition to renewable power

2 min read

A climate change convention in the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East will stress to policymakers the importance of transitioning from the fossil fuels to the renewable energy sources, as greenhouse gas emissions are resulting in regional temperatures increasing faster than in most other populated parts of the globe.

Although this “can’t happen quickly” due to the region’s strong reliance on the fossil fuels for energy generation, governments must make the changeover within the next two decades, as per George Zittis of Cyprus Institute’s Climate and Atmosphere Research Center, to avoid possible “irreversible repercussions” like desertification.

“We need to completely decarbonize, even if it means going negative,” Zittis stated in a discussion with The Associated Press ahead of the 2nd International Conference on East Mediterranean and Middle East, that is considered a global “climate change hotspot” when taken together. The conference will bring together 65 senior scientists, policymakers and diplomats from Jordan, Iraq, Egypt, Israel, and Greece to deliver the conclusions of a 2-year study founded on inputs from 220 specialists, as well as policy suggestions to regional countries.

Laurent Fabius, who was a Former French Prime Minister will attend, as will Virginijus Sinkevicius, who works as EU Environment Commissioner, a serving Jordanian Prince, El Hassan bin Talal, Jeffrey Sachs, President of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network, as well as Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades. According to Zittis, regional governments should pay attention to and accelerate the transition to renewables because the expedited temperature rise, coupled with reduced precipitation, may result in longer heat waves, elevating electricity prices for the greenhouse gas-emitting desalination plants as well as electricity-hungry air conditioning systems.

According to Zittis, natural gas is a fossil fuel which burns cleanly that might act as a bridging fuel for the area until renewables such as wind and solar become more readily available. A hotter location means less soil moisture, which is crucial for keeping air temperatures cool after precipitation evaporates. Cities in the eastern Mediterranean as well as the Middle East are growing, reducing the amount of arable land available to store moisture. According to Zittis, city temperatures are 2 to 4 degrees Celsius greater than outside cities.

As per Zittis, the East Mediterranean and the Middle East emit nearly as much the greenhouse gas as the European Union as a whole. Scientists will also urge governments to make new houses, buildings, and automobile engines as energy-efficient as possible. Specialists will also be required to establish methods for how governments will adapt to a changing environment in order to deal with the higher costs that will certainly follow. According to Zittis, scientists are also worried about possible mass migrations from the Middle Eastern nations as the water becomes limited and temperatures rise.

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