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Climate that the Gulf countries could not survive due to global warming – West-France evening edition

Wednesday 1There is September 2021


Aziz El Massassi (Agencies France-Presse) with AFP reporters in the Gulf

The Persian Gulf states continue to experience heat waves in excess of 40 degrees Celsius. Scientists warn that climate change could significantly increase the amount of heat pressure in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain or Kuwait.

During the hot summer months, Samir rides his small motorcycle through the streets of Dubai in pain. It is 45 C in the shade, and as the Earth warms, the temperature in the Gulf becomes unlivable, causing delayed awakening. “In this heat I work from 9am to 4pm” With “A break every three hours”, This Pakistani delivery man, an employee of a mobile delivery application in this big city, explains with a shy smile United Arab Emirates.

In Dubai, which is warming due to high humidity, Emirates and foreigners are escaping the scorching summer heat. Residents spend most of their time in severely refrigerated areas and rely on a battalion of supply personnel to reduce their emissions.

And the situation is likely to get worse. With global warming, “Significant increase in thermal pressure” In many Gulf cities, says Elfati Eldahir, a professor of hydrology and climate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Also read: With a humid temperature of 35 C, this deadly gateway to humans is no longer a fantasy

At the end of the century, with the combination of high temperatures – above 50 ° C – and humidity, some places may enjoy episodes “Thermal stress does not apply to human life”, This researcher said. Directly involved, the United Arab Emirates has introduced an environmental strategy for 2050, specifically aimed at increasing the share of clean energy from 25 to 50% and reducing the carbon footprint of electricity generation by 70%.

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The fog is trying to cool the suffocating atmosphere on a main road in Dubai. (Photo: Kareem Sahib / AFP)

Take the matter to heart

“Emirates is very interested in this issue, but we are still waiting for the big companies to take this issue to heart,” he said. Says Tanzeed Alam, director of Earth Matters Consulting, an environmental consulting firm based in Dubai.

In the Emirates, for many years, planes have been used to sow clouds, with the intention of causing rain and then catching it. Soon, drones could be used for the same purpose.

The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) estimated in a report released in early August that global warming by +1.5 ° C will threaten humanity by 2030, ten years earlier than previous forecasts, compared to the pre-industrial period. “Unprecedented”. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the report was needed “Ring the bell” Fossil fuels.

Also read: To climate expert Jean-Jussel, the IPCC report “reaffirms urgency of action”

Gulf countries, which depend on hydrocarbon exploitation for a long time, have been under bad pressure on the environmental issue, but in recent years have sought to change their discourse in order to restore their international image, but also to diversify their economies.

For example, the Emirate of Abu Dhabi has built a solar power plant, one of the largest on the planet. Saudi Arabia, the world’s first exporter of crude oil, has undertaken extensive reforms to diversify its economy, announcing several major environmental projects focusing on solar energy.

Dubai in the middle of a heat wave at the end of August 2021 (Photo: Kareem Sahib / AFP)

“Cool water tanks”

For nine years, he was interested in renewable energies by Mohammed Abdel. He is the founder of a startup that specializes in a technology “It allows water tanks to be cooled during the hot summer months using only solar energy According to him, demand for his company Silent Power has increased this summer – especially in the heat – in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the Emirates. “We have long and strong sunlight”, He points out, which makes a production easier “Clean, Stable and Cheap Energy”.

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In Kuwait, another Gulf oil monarch, Khalid Jamal al-Falih, has decided to run his entire house on solar energy. “Today, in Kuwait, a busy person can only go out after 6 pm and use a refrigerated car to get to the refrigerated place,” he said. he said. The idea of ​​being able to escape the reality of climate change was once widespread in this country, he emphasizes, “Impossible”.