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Food and Climate
1. Plants and climate
2. The climate change issue
3. Drought in the Mediterranean
- what is drought?
- causes & types of drought
- drought and fire
* Worksheet 1
* Worksheet 2
* Worksheet 3

Food & Climate 


Unit 3:
Drought in the Mediterranean

Drought is a severe problem in the Mediterranean due to the huge growth in population in the region and the resultant increased need for water for agriculture and life.  It has also proved very hard to change people's habits in order to reduce water consumption.



limits of the Mediterranean watershed

1. Limits of the Mediterranean basin.  Source FAO.

What is exactly the Mediterranean basin?

This map shows all the countries which make up the Mediterranean basin.  They include countries in Southern Europe, in  Northern Africa and countries on then east coast of the Mediterranean Sea, including Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Israel and Jordan.

Although these countries are very different from one another culturally and politically, they share a similar climate with very particular characteristics.  The impact of climate change on agriculture in all of these countries will be similar and a common solution would be to improve water use in this very important sector of the economy.

One major problem we have a the moment is forecasting exactly when a drought or flood will occur.  This makes it very difficult to decide how to use water sensibly.


This satellite image shows the Mediterranean basin from space and gives a good idea how water is distributed in this region.  Its easy to see the green areas with high plant growth in Northern Europe, turning into brown areas with low plant growth in Southern Europe and the desert areas in North Africa. 


Normalized Difference Vegetation Index

2. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI).  G. Begni, MEDIAS-France.

About this page!
Author:  Marta Moneo and Dr. Ana Iglesias - Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, España
1. scientific reviewer: Alex de Sherbinin - CIESIN, Columbia University, USA
2. scientific reviewer: Lily Parshall - Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Columbia University, USA
educational reviewer: Emilio Sternfeld - Colegio Virgen de Mirasierra - España
last published: 2004-05-12



last updated 23.02.2006 19:56:08 | © ESPERE-ENC 2003 - 2013