非洲、气候变化和八国峰会

英国首相托尼·布莱尔已经宣布,今年七月举行的八国峰会的两大主要议题将是非洲贫困与全球气候变化。这两个话题也许看起来大相径庭,但事实上,它们却是相互关联的。我去了埃塞俄比亚北部的Tigre地区的一个村庄,这趟旅行能解释其中缘由。

一天早晨,我被带到村庄边缘一个干涸的河床。农民们正在河床中挖一个深坑,一直挖到地面以下两米多的水管处。他们解释说,这条河不久之前还是一条四季不枯竭、全年流淌不息的河,但是现在这条河一到旱季就断流。只有在每年夏天的降雨来临之时,河床里才会有河水。就是从那个时候开始,只要能够找到水源并且有足够的钱把水抽出来,缺水地区就会挖坑寻水。

和非洲其他诸多地区一样,北埃塞俄比亚最近几年的雨循环已经发生显著变化。埃塞俄比亚内的村庄长期以来依赖于两种农作物。一种农作物生长于三月和四月的短雨季,而主要农作物则在夏天的长雨季中生长。最近几年,短雨季已经完全消失,而长雨季也变得不再稳定。饥荒正在蔓延。或许已有一半的儿童体重严重不足。

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