From Climate Change to Conflict
Environmental Security Challenges in North-Western Kenya
Keywords:Cilmate Change, Climate-Conflict Nexus, East Africa, Environment, North-Western Kenya, Pastoral Conflicts, Raiding, Resource Scarcity, Security
In recent years, debate and research on the effects of climate change have intensified. By contributing to natural disasters, sea-level rise and resource scarcity, changes in climate are anticipated to become a significant threat to environmental security. However, existing literature and case studies on the effects of climate change in relation to violence find diverging results. This research note therefore asks if and to what extent climate change can be regarded as a significant contributor to violent conflicts. By investigating climate-related effects on pastoral raiding in North-Western Kenya, the overall relationship between climate change and conflict is analysed on the basis of a practical case study. This analysis supports that climate change is a decisive factor in increasing violence. By multiplying previously existing socio-political tensions and triggering the outbreak of latent conflict, climate change can have impacts on both environmental and civil security. However, its effects are often not directly visible.
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