Африка, изменение климата и саммит большой восьмерки

Премьер-министр Великобритании Тони Блэр заявил, что двумя центральными вопросами на саммите Большой Восьмерки в июле этого года будут бедность в Африке и глобальное изменение климата. Может показаться, что это две совершенно разных проблемы. На самом деле они взаимосвязаны. Моя поездка в одну из деревень в области Тигра в северной Эфиопии объясняет почему.

Однажды утром меня отвели к пересохшему руслу реки на краю деревни. Фермеры копали в русле яму на глубину приблизительно двух метров до уровня подземных вод. Они объяснили мне, что до недавнего времени эта река была непересыхающей – она текла круглый год – но теперь во время сухого сезона река пересыхает. И только когда летом начинается сезон дождей, в русле реки вновь появляется вода. До этого момента, жаждущие воды общины роют ямы в поисках воды, если им удается ее найти и если они смогут позволить себе ее выкачивать.

В северной Эфиопии, как практически и во всей Африке, цикл дождей в последние годы заметно изменился. Жизнь эфиопской деревни долгое время зависела от двух урожаев, один из которых был во время коротких дождей в марте и апреле, а другой, главный урожай, во время длинных дождей в летние месяцы. В последние годы короткие дожди прекратились совсем, а длинные дожди стали непостоянными. Голод стал вездесущим. Наверно половина всех детей весят намного ниже нормы.

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