IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Climate change and security in the Israeli–Palestinian context

Listed author(s):
  • Eran Feitelson

    (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

  • Abdelrahman Tamimi

    (Palestinian Hydrology Group for Water and Environmental Resources Development)

  • Gad Rosenthal

    (Kivun Consulting)

Registered author(s):

    The Middle East is among the least stable and most fragile regions. It is not surprising, therefore, that concerns have been raised regarding the potential implications of climate change. This article critically examines the potential interactions between climate change and conflict in the Israeli–Palestinian case. Based on a review of the possible effects of climate change, water is identified as the main issue which may be affected, and it also has transboundary implications. We illustrate the potential implications of reduced freshwater availability by assessing the ability to supply normative domestic water needs under rapid population growth scenarios, including return of refugees. In addition, the ability to supply environmental needs and the needs of peripheral farmers under extremely reduced availability scenarios is examined. The normative domestic demand in Israel and the West Bank can be supplied on the basis of natural resources, though re-allocation of water from Israel to the Palestinians is necessary. The Gaza Strip cannot supply the normative domestic needs under any scenario and hence requires immediate augmentation, regardless of climate change. Desalination can supply Gaza’s needs and augment water resources in Israel and the West Bank, thereby partially decoupling domestic and agricultural use from climate. Thus, it is unlikely that climate change will directly affect the conflict. However, framing water as a security issue, along with the potential for furthering such securitization with reference to climate change, may adversely affect the readiness of the parties to take adaptive measures and lead them to rigidify their negotiating positions. Possible effects of climate change on other regional players, particularly Egypt and Jordan, may have indirect effects on the Israeli–Palestinian scene. But this hypothesis requires further study.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by Peace Research Institute Oslo in its journal Journal of Peace Research.

    Volume (Year): 49 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 1 (January)
    Pages: 241-257

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:sae:joupea:v:49:y:2012:i:1:p:241-257
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:joupea:v:49:y:2012:i:1:p:241-257. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (SAGE Publications)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.