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Published on October 28th, 2011 | by ziggy

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Map Shows Who Gets Screwed by Climate Change, Who Doesn’t

Which countries fare the worst in the face of global climate change?

In a new map illustrating climate vulnerability, it’s obvious which countries take the biggest hits, and are most susceptible to the effects of climate change. Developed by risk analysts Maplecroft, the map combines measures of the risk of certain global warming impacts, including storms, flooding, and droughts, with the social and financial ability of both local communities and governments to confront the resulting changes.

It should be no surprise that the so-called “third world” countries are the most vulnerable (including Haiti and Bangladesh) and quite frankly, the most screwed in the face of the increasing threats of global climate change.

Even though highly industrialized and so-called developed countries are responsible for the major production of carbon emissions, it will be the poorer nations of the world that have the biggest threats to face. Maplecroft’s climate change vulnerability map clearly illustrates this imbalance of our current globalized world.

From The Guardian:

But it is not until you go all the way down 103 on the list, out of 193 nations, that you encounter the first major developed nation: Greece. The first 102 nations are all developing ones. Italy is next, at 124, and like Greece ranks relatively highly due to the risk of drought. The UK is at 178 and the country on Earth least vulnerable to climate change, according to Maplecroft, is Iceland.

“Large areas of north America and northern Europe are not so exposed to actual climate risk, and are very well placed to deal with it,” explains Charlie Beldon, principal analyst at Maplecroft.

The vulnerability index has been calculated down to a resolution of 25km2 and Beldon says at this scale the vulnerability of the developing world’s fast growing cities becomes clear. “A lot of big cities have developed in exposed areas such as flood plains, such as in south east Asia, and in developing economies they so don’t have the capacity to adapt.”

Indeed, this climate vulnerability map is a sign of the times.

Image credit: suburbanbloke via flickr, Maplecroft

 



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About the Author

I'm a 26-year-old currently living at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage in northeast Missouri, an intentional community devoted to sustainable living and culture change. Things you might find me doing here (other than blogging) are building with natural materials, gardening, beekeeping, making cheese, candlemaking, and above all else, living simply. You can read about my on-going natural building projects at: http://www.small-scale.net/yearofmud



3 Responses to Map Shows Who Gets Screwed by Climate Change, Who Doesn’t

  1. Terry Carlson says:

    Gee Ziggy,

    i guess the people who would get screwed the worst would be those forced to give up most of their energy and pay throught the nose for what little was left to them. Not the brightest penny in the piggy are we?

  2. This definitely puts things into perspective. Since developed countries aren’t as affected, they’re not moved to action by necessity, which is making things even worse. It’s a vicious cycle that needs to be broken.

    Juan Miguel Ruiz (Going Green)

  3. Pingback: Google Earth Shows Climate Change at the Local Level | Sustainablog

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