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October 23, 2019
GREEK NEWS

UN Warns One Third of Greece Threatened by Desertification

Greece’s only desert, on the island of Lemnos (Limnos) in the Northern Aegean Sea. Photo from website Limnos Report 

June 17 is the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, according to a United Nations initiative. This year the organization is sending our new warnings concerning the dangers of desertification across the world, especially in the Mediterranean countries.

According to a recent study, the UN considers the nation of Greece has a “high” likelihood  of seeing vast swaths of its land turned into desert as climate change advances, while weather patterns of higher temperatures and less precipitation prevail.

Academic researcher Christos Zerevos spoke with Greece’s AMNA news agency on Monday, warning that the entire Mediterranean region is threatened by extreme drought and desertification. This grim new forecast comes as result of data collected from scientific models and projections as well as historic records.

The study by the UN projects that more than 135 million people will be forced to leave their lands in the coming decades due to drought, while by 2025, approximately 1.5 billion people may experience a complete lack of water where they live.

Zerefos noted the difference between current events and historic incidents of desertification  which have taken place in many different areas across the globe in the past.

”The climate destabilization caused by human activities has one principle — and this is that it takes place in a very short period of time,” Zerefos explains.

The regions of Greece believed to be most prone to desertification according to the UN are the Eastern Peloponnese, all of the Aegean islands, parts of Central Greece and Euboea, as well as parts of Thessaly, Macedonia, Thrace and Crete.

The World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought was established in 1995 to raise awareness of the presence of desertification and drought, highlighting methods for preventing desertification and recovering from its destructive phenomena.

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