Most of the main consequences to be expected of climate change will be felt through water : change in precipitation patterns, floods, droughts and increased scarcity. The poorer populations of this planet will be the main victims of these changes, but richer regions will also be confronted with new challenges - especially those whose development was partially based on the over-exploitation of meagre water supplies. Through water, entire sections of the economy and the social fabric will have to adapt to a new reality.
Climate change requires therefore a wide-ranging revision of current water governance and development models (both of which are usually closely interrelated).
In turn, climate change mitigation or adaptation policies must take water resources into account. Water and energy are so thoroughly embedded that unsustainable choices (such as corn-based ethanol) will soon prove a dead-end.
The dependency of the energy sector on water, and the risks related to climate change
Last update : October 2009 - First publication : January 2009
The energy sector uses huge quantities of water, (almost) irrespective of the source of energy in question. It is therefore vulnerable to the effects of climate change in terms of available resources. And as the case of biofuels has shown, all the proposals for reorienting energy policies need (...)