Extreme Climate Events and Conflicts in the G5 Sahel Countries

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African Economic Research Consortium
Climate change affects population and economic activities dynamic and thereby puts additional pressure on scarce resources. These dynamics have the potential to trigger conflicts or exacerbate the existing ones. According to Homer-Dixon (1999), arid regions in Africa, in particular, are prone to ‘scarcity-induced conflicts. This policy brief aims to share insights on climate and conflicts nexus with a specific focus on the G5-Sahel countries. To do so, we use both country and cell level analysis The G5 Sahel countries are trapped in a complex socio-political environment and multiple factorsmay contribute to conflicts. Isolating the contribution of each factoris criticaltodesigning andimplementing conflictmitigationandpeace-buildingpolicies. The G5-Sahel country members (Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad) are experiencing both and increase in conflicts and extreme climate events in terms of occurrence, and intensity reinforcing the suspicion about any association. Figure 1 shows the of extreme climate events and the number of people affected on the one hand (a) and the number of conflicts on the other hand (b). We observe an increase in both events over the last decades.