Fighting and adapting to climate change in the Mediterranean: fostering a greater regional cooperation?

In 2009, Stéphane Hallegatte, Samuel Somot and Hypatie Nassopoulos pointed out, relying on IPCC reports, that the Mediterranean basin is one of the globe’s region where models converge the most on the impacts of climate change (IPEMED, 2009). This observation was confirmed by more recent reports identifying the MENA region as a hot spot of climate change because of its vulnerability to the consequences of an average increase in temperatures by 2100 (+2°C at best). The risks induced by climate change will be even higher since the region is already facing a certain number of structural issues based on the current economic situation, such as water shortage, basic food products shortage, uncontrolled urban sprawl along coasts, tension between economic development and environment protection, etc.

Therefore, these countries must not only address the issue of fighting climate change but they must also adapt to it for the sake of proximity, solidarity and co-responsibility with Mediterranean countries. This is why IPEMED is in favour of an integrated approach, based on a strengthened cooperation between northern and southern shores and on shared solutions. Some of these solutions are examined further in sectorial projects carried out by IPEMED. In their 2012 report “Carbon Constraint in the Mediterranean Differentiated Impacts and Policies for Carbon Reduction in the Euro-Mediterranean Region”, Louis Boisgibault and Morgan Mozas published a review of the issues, results and perspectives of policies regarding C02 emission reduction in the region.

In view of the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21), that will be held from 30th November to 11th December 2015 at Le Bourget, IPEMED wishes to promote the idea that the climate can and should drive cooperation between Europe, the Mediterranean and Africa.


Associate Expert