Arab Digest: Parliaments, the Environment and Climate Change

صورة AGORA moderator

The world is facing severe challenges relating to climate change and the exploitation of environmental resources. Parliaments have a key role in setting a country’s wider development vision, and in developing sound environmental policies in support of this vision. This includes shaping a policy and regulatory framework that promotes mitigation of and adaptation to climate change, the development of renewable energy potential, and the provision of improved energy access and security, among others.

In addition to their law-making functions, parliaments should provide effective oversight to ensure that the legislation it passes is sufficiently funded and implemented, and that the citizens it represents are consulted and included in these decision-making processes.

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is considered one of the most vulnerable regions to climate change impacts, on account of its water scarcity (the highest in the world). The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report estimates an increase in temperature in MENA of up to 2°C in the next 15-20 years, and over 4°C for the end of the century.  Climate models are projecting hotter, drier and less predictable climate, resulting in a drop in water run-off by 20% to 30% in most of MENA by 2050, mainly due to rising temperature and lower precipitation (Milly et al., 2005).

Climate models are projecting hotter, drier and less predictable climate, resulting in a drop in water run-off by 20% to 30% in most of MENA by 2050, mainly due to rising temperature and lower precipitation (Milly et al., 2005).

This Arab Digest by AGORA explores how parliaments and parliamentarians in the Arab States can move towards tackling climate change, and what steps can be taken to optimise the region's adaptation.  To read the digest, please click here.  

Photo credit: AlJazeera.