Climate Change Bringing Welcome Relief To Parts Of Africa!

One aspect of climate change propaganda is the claim that it’s good for everything that is bad, and bad for everything that is good. Of course that claim is preposterous because climate change will bring benefits and relief to places that have long been climatically stressed.

Already the Sahara region has greened up significantly over the past 35 years many studies and satellite images show. It’s be stupid to try to reverse this.

Today we present 2 more studies that illustrate that a climate change is beneficial for many.

New studies on Ethiopia’s water supply: Harsh droughts more seldom, more precipitation expected in the future

By Dr. Sebastian Lüning and Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt
(German text translated by P Gosselin)

The outlook for Ethiopia looks good. Scientists at Virginia Tech University project that rains will be more frequent in the area of the Blue Nile in Ethiopia as a result of climate change. Here is the press release dated October 10, 2016:

Virginia Tech researchers: Climate change may benefit Ethiopia, increase the country’s access to water
Despite the many disastrous impacts of climate change, there are some regions of the globe that might benefit from hotter temperatures. A team of researchers from Virginia Tech have predicted that water availability in the Blue Nile Basin of Ethiopia may increase in coming decades due to global climate change. It could also lead to increased crop production, spur massive hydroelectric power projects, and foster irrigation development in the region. ‘For all the catastrophic impacts of climate change, there are some silver linings,’ said Zach Easton, associate professor of biological systems engineering. ‘The sad irony is that climate change may be the catalyst Ethiopia needs to become a food-exporting country.’

The research team used a suite of climate and hydrologic models to predict the impact of climate change on water availability and sediment transport in the Blue Nile. Most previous Nile Basin climate impact studies have only focused on water availability, but the study conducted by the team at Virginia Tech was a first of its kind to to assess sediment transport, a big problem in the basin where some of the highest erosion rates in the world have been measured. The findings of the study were recently published in the journal Climatic Change.

‘Ethiopia could experience increased water accessibility making growing seasons longer and potentially allowing for two crops to be grown per year,’ said Moges Wagena, from Assosa, Ethiopia. Wagena is first author on the paper and also associated with the Abay Basin Authority, a water resource management entity for one of Ethiopia’s 12 water basins. Wagena is one of Easton’s doctoral candidates in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering, housed in both the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Engineering. The team also included Andrew Sommerlot, another of Easton’s doctoral candidates; Daniel Fuka, a post-doctoral student working with Easton; researchers from the University of Maryland; and the International Water Management Institute, Nile Basin Office. The work was funded by the World Bank and the International Water Management Institute.

The team coupled hydrologic models with bias-corrected and downscaled Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 5 models, known as CMIP5, for the project. Previously, studies that looked only at temperature and precipitation from the climate models found an increased rate of water availability of just 10 percent, where Easton and Wagena found potentially 20 to 30 percent more streamflow available in the region in the coming decades.

One potential problem that the analysis identified was increased sediment transport in the rivers due to increased water flow. The increased sediment has the potential to reduce the capacity of reservoirs and dams, making massive hydroelectric projects like Ethiopia’s largest dam currently under construction, the Grand Renascence Dam, less efficient in storing the 65 billion cubic meters of water that could potentially turn its turbines. ‘Greater water availability is certainly a positive outcome, but this is countered by more sediment. One way to combat that is through installing conservation practices  on farms, for instance using cover crops and low- and no-till planting methods to make the soil healthier, more stable, and reduce erosion,’ said Easton. While climate change is and will continue to cause untold problems, nuances in climate-induced weather events could benefit the Blue Nile Basin with increased rainfall in the area. ‘It’s interesting, because much of the Blue Nile Basin is well above 5,000 feet in elevation, giving it pretty much an ideal climate for agriculture with low humidity, low disease and pest pressure, and potentially great water availability, which could spur development,’ said Easton.”

The same is true in another study conducted by El Kenawy et al, which appeared in March 2016 in the Cuadernos de Investigación Geográfica. The researchers studied the development of droughts in Ethiopia over the past 50 years and found that the occurrence of severe droughts has declined significantly over the period. The abstract follows:

Changes in the frequency and severity of hydrological droughts over Ethiopia from 1960 to 2013
Here we present an analysis of drought occurrence and variability in Ethiopia, based on the monthly precipitation data from the Climate Research Unit (CRU-v3.22) over the period from 1960 to 2013. The drought events were characterized by means of the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) applied to precipitation data at a temporal scale of 12 months. At the national scale, the results reveal a statistically significant decrease in the severity of droughts over the 54-year period, a pattern that is mostly attributed to a statistically significant decrease in the frequency of high intensity drought episodes (i.e., extreme and very extreme droughts), compared to moderate droughts. To assess the general patterns of drought evolution, a principal component analysis (PCA) was applied to the SPI series. PCA results indicate a high spatial heterogeneity in the SPI variations over the investigated period, with ten different spatially well-defined regions identified. These PCA components accounted for 72.9% of the total variance of drought in the region. These regions also showed considerable differences in the temporal variability of drought, as most of the regions exhibited an increase in wetness conditions in recent decades. In contrast, the regions that receive less than 400 mm of annual precipitation showed a declining  trend, with the largest changes occurring over Afar region. Generally, the highly elevated regions over the central Ethiopian Highlands showed the weakest changes, compared to the lowlands. This study confirms the local character of drought evolution over Ethiopia, providing evidence for policy makers to adopt appropriate local policies to cope with the risks of drought. Over Ethiopia, the detailed spatial assessment of drought evolution is required for a better understanding of the possible impacts of recurrent drought on agriculture, food production, soil degradation, human settlements and migrations, as well as energy production and water resources management across Ethiopia.”


6 responses to “Climate Change Bringing Welcome Relief To Parts Of Africa!”

  1. John

    Unfortunately I see lots of “could” and “may” and climate computer models here.

    Don’t get me wrong, I am an ardent CAGW denier I am proud to say. But since I condemn the huge amount of weasel words and climate playstation model nonsense used on the other side of the argument I feel it appropriate to do likewise here.

    However, I understand why you bring attention to the studies Pierre. They should get just as much attention as all the weasel-word-climate-model studies telling us we are all gonna fry, in order to hopefully bring back some balance. But better would be (in an ideal world :-)) if neither side used these tactics…

  2. Adrian Roman

    I find ironic that even the ‘father’ (as in Father, Son and Holy Ghost, since it’s a religion) of AGW said:

    “By the influence of the increasing percentage of carbonic acid in the atmosphere, we may hope to enjoy ages with more equable and better climates, especially as regards the colder regions of the earth, ages when the earth will bring forth much more abundant crops than at present, for the benefit of rapidly propagating mankind” Svante Arrhenius

    They actually deny the teachings of the Father 🙂

  3. M E

    I’m trying to remember my days studying Prehistoric Archaeology back in the sixties. I think that we considered to herders of N Africa and the Horn of Africa who moved into these semidesert areas when they became green during what were called pluvial periods. The rain fell on the land the land grew low vegetation the herders moved in. Then things grew dry again and the herds moved back into a southerly location where there were waterholes and some short vegetation Then it would happen again many years later . It may have happened during the Dynastic Periods in Egypt where records of a sort could be kept. They kept records of levels of the Nile Floods in temples because the temple staff could write demotic
    writing on papyrus. But you would need to ask an Egyptologist about that.

  4. Graham

    Interesting that there is acceptance of climate change and acknowledgement “Despite the many disastrous impacts of climate change ” of the concerns that scientists have long expressed.
    Congratulations on moving towards enlightenment.

  5. Graeme No.3

    The troubles with this prediction is that it assumes
    that the climate has been warming as per the creed.
    that the climate will be warming as pre the creed.

  6. tom0mason

    And the LORD said unto Noah, Come you and all your house into the ark; for you have I seen righteous before me in this generation.
    Of every clean beast you shall take to you by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female.
    Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep their kind alive upon the face of all the earth.
    For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living thing that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth

    So is the any historical evidence for such a catastrophic event, Malaga Bay investigates…