Mercoledì, 07 Giugno 2023
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Home Scienza e Tecnica Almost 700 million people will live in Mediterranean Countries by 2050

Almost 700 million people will live in Mediterranean Countries by 2050

Scienza e Tecnica
Mediterranean Sea, view from Internaional Space Station (credit: NASA)

By 2050 the countries that look out onto the Mediterranean will have almost 700 million inhabitants, three and a half times the level of 1950, and the area’s demographic centre of gravity, once staunchly set on the northern side, will be far from Europe, moving towards the south-east, a top expert has said.

“There will be a revolution within the revolution” with important consequences in relation to climate change, said Massimo Livi Bacci, a demography lecturer with the University of Florence and an academic for the prestigious Accademia dei Lincei science academy. He was speaking at an Accademia dei Lincei conference held for the XXII World Water Day entitled “The Mediterranean System: a Hotspot for Climate Change and Adaptation”.

“According to the most recently updated United Nations projections, population growth will be weak, (increasing by) about a third, on the north side of the Mediterranean, from Spain to Greece, while it will be extremely vigorous in the rest of the region,” said Livi Bacci. “Indeed, the countries on the southern side, from Egypt to Morocco, and on the eastern side, from Turkey to Israel, will multiply their populations by five”. The population increase will be concentrated in coastal areas, “including those that are not much higher than sea level and are quite vulnerable to the consequences of rising sea levels and the intensification of extreme climate events due to climate change,” the expert said.

The increase in the number of inhabitants in coastal areas will also inevitably have consequences for fragile environmental equilibriums. “In addition to an intensification of maritime traffic, we can also expect greater energy consumption and greater production of greenhouse gases and refuse by the coastal cities,” stressed Livi Bacci. “However, this strong environmental pressure can be controlled: it is up to us to implement increasingly targeted and effective policies”.

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