Presentation on theme: "Global Warming: A Threat to the Mediterranean Presentation by Ian McLean St. Augustine’s College."— Presentation transcript:
Global Warming: A Threat to the Mediterranean Presentation by Ian McLean St. Augustine’s College
Introduction The Mediterranean is the most vulnerable region in Europe to climate change because of its sensitivity to drought and rising temperatures. Countries touching with the Mediterranean are at risk of: Severe water shortages Forest fires Loss of agricultural land Invasion of species from southern regions Changes will affect the supply of water from melting snow and ice, especially in mountainous areas, which reduces water supply at peak demand and increases the risk of floods during winter.
Human Intervention Approximately 200,000 ships crisscross the Mediterranean every year, making it the oiliest sea in the world ejecting around 650,000 tonnes per annum. About 150 million people live around the Mediterranean, and more than 100 million tourists arrive to shores every year. The Western side of the Mediterranean has an average of 1900 pieces of garbage lying on its sea bed per square kilometre – most of which is plastic which can take centuries to disintegrate.
Flora & Fauna Surface water temperature has risen by half a degree Celsius during the past 50 years and also became saltier. Such a minimal difference has caused a lot of death of typical Mediterranean species, such as certain corals, sea fans and sponges. Also, open-sea creatures are threatening the more tropical species as they are brought in for instance in ship hulls and are able to thrive in the warmer waters. Beach ecosystems are also damaged as the rising sea level washes sea to the seabed carrying with it plants which fail to thrive. Less than 1% of the Mediterranean’s Flora and Fauna are under environmental protection, while experts suggest that 50% is needed.
Going Local If the sea level continues to rise, some places in Malta will be eventually submerged. We can take the cave “Ghar Id-Dud” as an example, which will be submerged under water resulting in its destruction. If sea level continues to rise it will affect Malta’s supplies of drinking water and reservoirs. Example of this is Ta’ Kandia galleries. The water in the tunnels is fresh but 10m below it is salted, and the level of this salted water is rising. It is feared that the salty water mixes with the fresh water making it undrinkable.