Scientific article
Open access

Climate change and its impacts: growing stress factors for human societies

ContributorsBeniston, Martin
Published inInternational review of the Red Cross, vol. 92, no. 879, p. 557-568
Publication date2010

The realization that human beings need to be concerned by the only “life-support system” that the Earth and its environment provides stems perhaps in part from the fact that until fairly recently, the evolution of humankind was largely dependent on the quality of the environment and the resources it provides in terms of water, food, and favorable health conditions. This is still the case today, despite current levels of technology and apparent resilience in the face of often degraded environments in many parts of the world. Today, the conditions for human sustainability (i.e., water quality and quantity, food security and health risks) are potentially under threat as a result of numerous human-induced factors; among these, climatic change is certainly one of the more durable aspects of anthropogenic disruptions to natural resources. This article will thus focus on the possible evolution of climate in the course of the 21st century, and a number of key climate impacts that may determine the future course of human societies and the way these may handle issues like rivalries over natural resources, possible environmentally-driven conflicts and migrations.

Citation (ISO format)
BENISTON, Martin. Climate change and its impacts: growing stress factors for human societies. In: International review of the Red Cross, 2010, vol. 92, n° 879, p. 557–568. doi: 10.1017/S1816383110000342
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Article (Accepted version)
ISSN of the journal1607-5889

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