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Climate Change, Water Resources and Conflict in the Niger River Basin

DEV Key Contact: Marisa Goulden

Project Dates: November 2010 to December 2011

Project Status: Completed

DEV Researchers: Marisa GouldenRoger Few

Funder:

This research explored the consequences of climate change and climate variability in the Niger River Basin for human security and the risk of conflict. The research examined the linkages between climate, conflict, human security, adaptation and resilience in a multi-scale study that included three case studies of water management and climate impacts on the River Niger. Two of the case studies are in Mali and one is in Nigeria.

The River Niger traverses a region of the Sahel that has experienced significant reductions in rainfall and river flow since the late 1960s as well as extreme rainfall events and significant flooding impacts in recent years. The impacts of future climate change in the region are highly uncertain. This research assessed the tensions and risks of conflict associated with water resources and climate stresses, as well as the impacts on the livelihoods and human security of vulnerable populations. The significance of climate stresses is carefully assessed in the context of other key social and political factors in the generation of tension and conflict. The research considered the role of adaptation, institutions and conflict resolution mechanisms as sources of resilience. 

Partner Organisations:

Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research

International Alert

Centre d'Appui à la Recherche et à la Formation (CAREF) Mali

Institute of Developmental Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka

University Abdou Moumouni Dioffo, Niger.

Project website:

http://www.international-alert.org/resources/publications/climate-change-water-and-conflict-niger-river-basin

http://www.tyndall.ac.uk/climate-change-water-resources-and-conflict-river-niger-basin

Selected Outputs:

Watch a video of lead researcher  Marisa Goulden and colleagues from International Alert discussing the research findings in an event hosted by the Woodrow Wilson Center in November 2011:http://www.wilsoncenter.org/event/climate-change-water-and-conflict-the-niger-river-basin

Goulden, M., Few, R., Abebe, L., Brooks, N., Daoud, M., Konaté, M. K., Sarney, E., Smith, D., Umoh, B., Vernon, P., Weiner, J. and Yamba, B. 2011. Climate change, water and conflict in the Niger River Basin. International Alert, London and University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK.http://www.tyndall.ac.uk/sites/default/files/201112nigerclimatechange_final.pdf