ArticlePDF Available

Implications of Global Climate Change for Violence in Developed and Developing Countries



Content may be subject to copyright.
Implications of Global Climate
Change for Violence Developed
and Developing Countries
Iowa State University
Rapid global climate change, taking place over decades rather than millen-
nia, is a fact of twenty-rst century life. Human activity, especially the
release of greenhouse gases, has initiated a general warming trend. The
10 warmest years on record between 1880 and 2008 were the last 10. This trend is
expected to continue until the atmospheric composition returns to a preindustrial
era norm.
Climate change effects on specic regions are expected to vary consider-
ably. Though most parts of the globe are warming, a few places may experience
cooler climates as ocean and wind currents shift. Some regions are experiencing
increased rainfall, whereas many others are having prolonged droughts. In 2007,
the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a report that
included numerous projections of likely effects by the end of this century, under
varying assumptions of how world governments, industries, and people respond.
The best-case scenario assumes huge reductions in net greenhouse gas production,
beginning almost immediately. In this scenario, climate models predict an average
global temperature increase of 1.8°C (3.24°F) and an average sea level increase
of 28 cm (11 inches). The worst-case scenario, which assumes a business-as-usual
approach, predicts increases of 4.0°C (7.2°F) and 43 cm (17 inches). Other pro-
jections, some of which have already become apparent, include increases in heat
waves and heavy precipitation; decreases in precipitation in subtropical areas; and
increases in tropical cyclones. More specic projections include (1) 5–8% increase
in the proportion of Africa that is arid and semiarid; (2) major ooding of heavily
populated areas of Asia from rising sea levels and storms; (3) inundation of low-
Y115381_C016.indd 247 11/2/10 10:38:16 AM
Anderson, C. A., & DeLisi, M.
(2011). Implications of global climate
change for violence in developed and
developing countries. Chapter in J.
Forgas, A. Kruglanski, & K.
Williams (Eds.), The Psychology of
Social Conflict and Aggression. (pp.
249-265). New York: Psychology
lying islands; (4) severe water shortages in Australia and New Zealand; (5) drought
in southern Europe; (6) decreased soil moisture and food crops in Latin America;
and (7) increased winter ooding and summer heat waves in North America. More
recent research being prepared for the next IPCC report suggests that the new
best-case scenario will be worse than the old worst-case scenario, with sea levels
rising a least 1 meter (Vermeer & Rahmstorf, 2009). Because 13% of the world’s
population —hundreds of millions of people —live in low-lying coastal areas
(Engelman, 2009, p. 41), this latter projection is particularly disturbing. Indonesia
may lose as many as 2,000 small islands in the next 20 years to rising sea levels
(Engelman, p. 3).
In addition to the changes in average temperature and rainfall, climate
models also predict an increase in extreme weather events. Recent data suggest
that this increase has already begun, with dramatic increases in oods, wind
storms, and drought disasters in the last 20 years (Engelman, 2009, pp. 16, 30).
Hurricanes, cyclones, and other tropical storms also are increasing in intensity.
The problem with rising sea levels concerns not just the height of high tides but
also storm surge. A once-a-century storm in New York City, for example, will
occur about once every 3 years (Rahmstorf, 2009) if average sea level increases
by 1 meter.
Research from psychology, sociology, political science, economics, history, and
geography suggest that rapid global warming can increase the incidence of violent
behavior in at least three ways. One involves direct effects of uncomfortably warm
temperatures on irritability, aggression, and violence. A second involves indirect
effects of global warming on factors that put children and adolescents at risk for
developing into violence-prone adults. The third involves indirect effects of rapid
climate change on populations whose livelihoods and survival are suddenly at
risk, effects that inuence economic and political stability, migration, and violent
intergroup conict. For example, various governmental and scientic reports have
noted that climate change has exacerbated existing tensions and conicts singled
in the Darfur region of Sudan and in Bangladesh.
Heat and Aggression
Much research has established that uncomfortably warm temperatures can
increase the likelihood of physical aggression and violence (Anderson & Anderson,
1998; Anderson, Anderson, Dorr, DeNeve, & Flanagan, 2000; for a concise review
see Anderson, 2001). Three types of studies have tested and found considerable
support for this heat hypothesis: experimental studies, geographic region studies,
and time period studies.
Experimental Studies of the Heat Effect Early experimental studies of
heat effects yielded considerable inconsistency in outcomes, perhaps because of
participant suspicion and measurement issues. Later studies provided better tests
and cleaner results. For example, Vrij, van der Steen, and Koppelaar (1994) con-
ducted a eld experiment in which Dutch police ofcers were randomly assigned to
perform a training session involving a simulated burglary under hot or comfortable
Y115381_C016.indd 248 11/2/10 10:38:17 AM
conditions. Ofcers in the hot condition reported more aggressive and threatening
impressions of the suspect and were more likely to draw their weapon and to shoot
the simulated suspect.
Anderson et al. (2000) reported a series of laboratory experiments on both
hot and cold temperature effects. In separate experiments, uncomfortably warm
temperatures (relative to comfortable temperature) increased participants’ feelings
of anger and hostility, their perceptions of hostility in observed dyadic interac-
tions, and their initial retaliatory aggressive behavior against a person whose prior
harmful behavior was of an ambiguous nature. Recent experiments by Wilkowski,
Meier, Robinson, Carter, & Feltman (2009) linked heat-related imagery to a host
of anger and aggression-related perceptions and judgments.
Geographic Region Studies of the Heat Effect
Studies dating back to the nineteenth century suggest that hotter regions have higher
violent crime rates than cooler regions (Anderson, 1989). However, even within the
same country regions differ in many ways other than climate. Some of these other
differences (e.g., poverty, unemployment, age distribution, culture) are risk factors
for violence. The best geographic region studies include statistical controls for such
factors. Even when such factors are controlled, temperature predicts violent crime
rates. For example, hotter U.S. cities have higher violence rates than cooler cities,
even after statistically controlling for 14 risk factors including age, education, race,
economic, and culture of violence factors (Anderson & Anderson, 1996). Recent
work by Van de Vliert (2009; in press; under review) further suggests that climate and
economic conditions jointly inuence culture in ways that encourage or discourage
aggression and violence. Particularly vulnerable are populations that live in regions
that are both climatically challenging (hot, cold, or both) and impoverished.
Time Period Studies of the Heat Effect Time period” studies compare
aggression rates within the same region but across time periods that differ in tem-
perature. Studies vary considerably in terms of the time periods for which violence
and temperature are assessed. Overall, results are remarkably consistent. Hotter
time periods (e.g., days, seasons, years) are associated with higher levels of vio-
lence. For example, riots in the United States are relatively more likely on hotter
than cooler days (Carlsmith & Anderson, 1979). Similarly, violent crimes across a
wide range of countries and measures occur more frequently during hotter seasons
than cooler ones (Anderson, 1989).
Of course, other violence-related factors may differ between hotter versus cooler
time periods, even within the same region. For example, in the United States large
numbers of youth are out of school during the summer months, so one could argue
that the routine activities of the population might account for seasonal differences
in violence. Several studies have addressed this and other alternative explanations
of heat-related time period effects. Although it is clear that routine activities do
inuence aggressive behavior, it is also clear that such alternative explanations do
not parsimoniously account for many observed effects. For example, in two stud-
ies Anderson and Anderson (1984) found signicant day-of-week effects on daily
Y115381_C016.indd 249 11/2/10 10:38:17 AM
violent crime rates, in addition to heat effects. Other time-related routine activities,
such as youth being out of school in the summer, cannot account for the heat effect
found in Study 1 (Chicago), because that study included only the summer months.
Similarly, routine activity theory cannot account for the nding that Major League
Baseball pitchers are more likely to hit batters with a pitched ball on hot days than
on cool days, even after statistically controlling for the possibility of sweat inuenc-
ing the pitcher’s control (Reifman, Larrick, & Fein, 1991).
Differences in violent crime rates for hotter versus cooler days have been
found within cities as varied as Houston, Chicago, and Minneapolis (Anderson &
Anderson, 1984, 1998). Even after controlling for routine activity effects of time of
day and day of week, violent crimes are relatively more frequent in hotter weather
(e.g., Anderson & Anderson, 1998; Bushman, Wang, & Anderson, 2005a, 2005b).
Interestingly, nonviolent crime (burglary, motor vehicle theft) rates are largely
unrelated to heat.
When the time period is years (instead of days or seasons), the kinds of poten-
tially confounded variables change. For example, U.S. youth are out of school in
the summer regardless of whether the year is slightly warmer or cooler. When con-
sidering year-based studies and global warming effects, one might be concerned
about whether aggression-related factors such as age distribution (e.g., proportion
of the population that is in the high-crime age range) and income inequality (e.g.,
LaFree & Drass, 1996) might be confounded with time or systematic temperature
changes. We conducted two new studies to examine the effects of yearly changes
in temperature on violent and nonviolent crime in the United States, beginning
with 1950.
Study 1: Hot Years and Violent Crime
Data This study extends Anderson, Bushman, and Groom’s (1997) Study 1. Major
additions are 13 years of new data and several aggression-related control variables.
Data for the years 1950–2008 were obtained from U.S. government sources. From
the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports we created two crime measures. Violent crime
was dened as the sum of the homicide and assault rates per 100,000 population.
Nonviolent crime was dened as the sum of the burglary and motor vehicle theft
rates per 100,000 population.1
The primary predictor variable, annual average temperature, was computed
from data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Control
variables were year, age (proportion of the population in the 15–29 high-crime
age range), prison (number of incarcerated state and federal inmates per 100,000
population), poverty (percent of families living below the poverty line), and the
Gini index of income distribution inequality (perfectly equal distribution yields a
1 As in prior studies, robbery and rape were excluded for theoretical reasons. Both appear to have a
greater mixture of aggressive motives (intent to harm) and nonaggressive motives. See Anderson et
al., 1997.
Y115381_C016.indd 250 11/2/10 10:38:17 AM
Gini index of 0, perfect inequality = 1.0). Year effects might reect a host of cul-
tural and population changes, such as increased reporting of assaults and improve-
ments in trauma care. The other control variables have obvious theoretical links
to violence.
Correlated Residuals Time-series data often have a problem in which the residu-
als are correlated with time. The most common version is when the residuals at
any given time period (T) are correlated with the residuals at the subsequent time
period (T + 1). Such “autocorrelations” make ordinary least squares (OLS) proce-
dures inappropriate for estimating regression parameters. With a sufciently large
sample of time periods, autoregression (AR) techniques can be used to reduce
or eliminate autocorrelations among residuals and can thus yield more accurate
results. In all regression analyses, chi-square tests (Ljung & Box, 1978) were used
to assess goodness of model t regarding the presence of correlated residuals.
When the chi-square statistic suggested that the model provided a poor t to the
data, autoregressive parameters were added. This process was iteratively repeated
until the chi-square test statistic indicated nonsignicant autocorrelations in the
new residuals.
The present study addresses ve alternative explanations for heat-related time
period effects on violent behavior: (1) seasonal uctuations; (2) correlated residu-
als; (3) coincidental crime, year, and global warming trends; (4) coincidental age
distribution shifts; and (5) coincidental income and poverty shifts. The rst alter-
native explanation is dealt with by using year as the unit of analysis. The remain-
ing alternatives are handled by statistical controls. Nonviolent crime analyses are
included as a point of comparison.
Results Table 16.1 presents descriptive statistics and zero-order correlations
among the variables. Average annual temperature has increased during this 59-year
period (r = .54). Note the substantial zero-order correlations among violent crime,
temperature, and year. This suggests that in addition to checking for autocorrelated
residuals a conservative statistical procedure would also control for year effects.
Finally, note that nonviolent crime was not strongly correlated with temperature.
Table 16.2 presents the results of OLS and AR analyses on violent crime (top
section) and nonviolent crime (bottom section). OLS regression revealed a large
effect of temperature on violent crime; each 1°F increase in average annual temper-
ature was associated with 79 more serious and deadly assaults per 100,000 people.
However, the AR test revealed signicant autocorrelations among the residuals (χ2
(6) = 196, p < .05). We added AR parameters to the model until the autocorrelation
test became nonsignicant (three parameters were needed). This greatly reduced
the slope relating temperature to violent crime, but this heat effect remained sta-
tistically and practically signicant. In the next step we controlled for year. The
temperature effect on violent crime remained essentially unchanged. The year
effect also was signicant; each year added 4.90 violent crimes per 100,000 people.
We examined a host of models with the other control variables (age, prison rate,
poverty, Gini). Only prison rate yielded a signicant effect. With three autoregres-
sive parameters—temperature, year, and prison—in the model the temperature
Y115381_C016.indd 251 11/2/10 10:38:17 AM
TABLE 16.2 Destructive Testing Results Using Auto-Regressive
Parameters and Competitor Variables, Study 1, 1950–2008
ViolentaAR Test Temperature Effect
Model χ2df b SE t
OLS 196* 6 79 19.1 4.15* Year Effect
AR-3 3.80 3 4.11 1.25 3.30* b SE t Prison Effect
AR-3 4.07 3 4.16 1.25 3.33* 4.90 1.68 2.91* b SE t
AR-3 3.27 3 4.19 1.21 3.47* 8.34 1.88 4.43* -.42 .203 -2.07*
NonViobAR Test Age Effect
Model χ2df b SE t
OLS 186* 6 16,646 1778 9.37*
AR-3 4.85 3 9645 3321 2.90*
Temp, annual average temperature. Age, proportion of U.S. population in the 15–29 age range. AR,
autoregression. OLS, ordinary least squares.
a Serious and deadly assault: Assault + homicide.
b Nonviolent crime: Burglary + motor vehicle theft.
* p < .05. + p < .10 if t > 1.67.
TABLE 16.1 Correlations Among the Predictor and Outcome
Variables, Study 1, 1950–2008
Year Temp Age Prison Pov Gini Vio NVio
Year 1.00 0.54 0.04 0.90 –0.75 0.88 0.87 0.52
Temp 0.54 1.00 –0.19 0.61 –0.18 0.61 0.48 0.11
Age 0.04 –0.19 1.00 –0.36 –0.44 –0.30 0.25 0.78
Prison 0.90 0.61 –0.36 1.00 –0.43 0.97 0.69 0.13
Pov –0.75 –0.18 –0.44 –0.43 1.00 –0.36 –0.71 –0.79
Gini 0.88 0.61 –0.30 0.97 –0.36 1.00 0.72 0.16
Vio 0.87 0.48 0.25 0.69 –0.71 0.72 1.00 0.75
Nvio 0.52 0.11 0.78 0.13 –0.79 0.16 0.75 1.00
Descriptive Statistics
Mean 1979 57.85 0.227 231 16.1 0.382 239.1 1300
St.Dev. 17.2 0.78 0.025 153 5.6 0.027 127.7 544
Min. 1950 56.60 0.195 93 11.1 0.348 55.7 385
Max. 2008 59.70 0.272 512 32.5 0.432 451.3 2163
Notes: N = 59. If r > .25 then p < .05. Temp, annual average temperature. Age, proportion of U.S.
population in the 15–29 age range. Prison, number of incarcerated state and federal
inmates per 100,000 population. Pov, percent of families living below the poverty line.
Gini, index of income distribution equality (perfectly equal distribution yields a Gini index
of 0; perfect inequality = 1.0). Vi, serious and deadly assaults per 100,000 population. Nvio,
burglaries and motor vehicle thefts per 100,000 population.
Y115381_C016.indd 252 11/2/10 10:38:17 AM
effect remained signicant (b = 4.19). Finally, the greater the proportion of the
U.S. population that was imprisoned, the smaller the violent crime rate.
A host of OLS and AR models on nonviolent crime did not yield a single sig-
nicant temperature effect. Indeed, after appropriate AR parameters were in the
model, only age was a signicant predictor of nonviolent crime rates. For every 1%
increase in the proportion of high-crime age individuals in the population, there
was an increase of 96 nonviolent crimes per 100,000 people.
Study 2: Hot Summers and Violent Crime
Data This study extends Anderson et al.’s (1997) Study 2. It examines violent
crime in the summer months in the United States relative to nonsummer months.
Major additions are 9 years of new data and several aggression-related control vari-
ables. Data for the years 1950–2004 were collected from numerous governmental
sources. Seasonal data were unavailable after 2004.
Basically, the dataset is the same as for the prior study, with two major excep-
tions. First, the outcome variable is the difference between the percent of the
year’s crimes that were committed during the summer months (June, July, August)
and the average of the other three seasons, adjusted for number of days in each
season. If violent crimes were equally likely to occur regardless of season, then the
summer months would account for exactly 25% of them, and the summer effect
score used in this study would be zero. If violent crimes were relatively more (less)
likely in the summer months, the summer effect would be greater (less) than zero.
A similar summer effect was computed for nonviolent crimes.
The second major difference from Study 1 was the temperature measure.
Across a sample of cities, we recorded the number of hot days (maximum tempera-
ture was ≥ 90°F) per year. The vast majority of hot days in the continental United
States occur during the summer months, so this measure is a good indicator of the
hotness of each of the 55 summers.
Predictions We expected the summer effect on violent crime to be signicantly
greater than zero, when averaged across years. Furthermore, we expected years
with more hot days to yield larger summer effects on violent crime than years with
fewer hot days.
Results As expected, the average summer effect on violent crime was signi-
cantly greater than zero (M = 2.57, t(54) = 18.52, p < .05). Violent crimes are
overrepresented in the summer months. In fact, in only 2 of the 55 years was the
summer effect negative.
Concerning the second hypothesis, there was no evidence of autocorrelations
among the residuals in any of the analyses of violent crime, so OLS analyses were
appropriate. The only variable that signicantly predicted the size of the summer
effect on violent crime was the number of hot days (b = .068, t(53) = 3.07, p < .05).
None of the control variables (including year) had a signicant effect, nor did they
Y115381_C016.indd 253 11/2/10 10:38:17 AM
substantially reduce the size of the hot days effect. Nonviolent crime was unaf-
fected by number of hot days.
General Discussion of the Heat Effect on Aggression
In sum, the heat hypothesis has been repeatedly conrmed. Laboratory studies
suggest that this is largely the result of heat induced increases in irritability and
in hostile interpersonal perception biases. There is additional evidence that these
effects can be further traced to thermoregulation and emotion regulation areas
of the brain (Anderson, 1989; Boyanowsky, 1999, 2008; Boyanowsky, Calvert-
Boyanowsky, Young, & Brideau, 1981). The implication for global warming is that
at the level of the individual person increased exposure to uncomfortably hot
temperatures will increase the likelihood of interpersonal conict and violence.
It is difcult to estimate with condence how big an impact global warming will
have on violent crime in modern societies, but Figure 16.1 provides some rough
estimates based on the results of Study 1. If average annual temperature in the
United States increases by 8°F (4.4°C), the best estimate of the effect on the
total murder and assault rate is an increase of about 34 per 100,000 people, or
over 100,000 more such serious and deadly assaults per year in a population of
305 million.
One response to high heat in industrialized countries is increased use of air
conditioning in buildings, cars, buses, and trains. Although such actions might
mitigate heat-induced increases in aggression, they increase the production of
greenhouse gases.
There are no comparable daily, seasonal, or annual data on the heat effect on
violent crime in less developed countries. However, the ndings summarized in
previous sections suggest that uncomfortably hot temperatures can have a fairly
direct effect on aggressive and violent tendencies, perhaps through neuro and hor-
monal pathways that are common to thermoregulation and emotion (see Chapter
9 in this volume).
b =5.40 +1 S.E.
b =4.19 Best Estimate
b =2.98 +1 S.E.
Increase in Murder/Assault Rate
Increase in Average Annual Temperature
Increase in # of Murder/Assaults
Y115381_C016.indd 254 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
Figure 16.1. Heat E!ect on Violent Crime in the U.S., 1950-2008.
Global climate change will likely increase the proportion of children and youth
exposed to risk factors known to increase the likelihood of becoming a violence-
prone individual— someone who frequently uses physical aggression or violence
to deal with conict, to get desired resources, and to impulsively and shortsight-
edly satisfy one’s wants (Gottfredson & Hirschi, 1990; Moftt, 1993). Studies of
violent youth and criminals reveal a host of psychological, neuropsychological,
genetic, and environmental risk factors that play a major role in determining who
becomes a violence-prone person. These interrelated risk factors include male gen-
der; strongly heritable antisocial traits including impulsivity, sensation seeking, low
intelligence, and poor self-regulation; poverty; poor prenatal and childhood nutri-
tion; familial dysfunction; growing up in violent neighborhoods; psychopathy; low
education; and disorganized and unstable neighborhood (DeLisi, 2005).
Food, Violence, and Antisocial Behavior
Potentially one of the most catastrophic effects of rapid climate change centers
on food availability. Today, one in eight U.S. households with infants is food inse-
cure— the family has limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate
and safe foods. In many parts of the world, food insecurity is a much larger prob-
lem. This means that a robust proportion of impoverished children (notwithstand-
ing the multifaceted independent effects of poverty on antisocial behavior) face
the specter of poor nutrition or malnutrition—conditions with severe long-term
consequences for crime and violence. A recent study is illustrative. Jianghong Liu
and colleagues examined the longitudinal relationship between malnutrition and
subsequent externalizing and antisocial behaviors using a birth cohort of children
from the island of Mauritius, off the coast of Africa. Children who were malnour-
ished at age 3 were signicantly more aggressive and hyperactive at age 8, more
aggressive and prone to externalizing (acting out) behaviors at age 11, and more
hyperactive and more likely to exhibit symptoms of conduct disorder at age 17 (Liu,
Raine, Venables, & Mednick, 2004).
It is not merely armchair conjecture to assert that food scarcity will result in
increased violence-prone individuals; history has already told such a story. From
October 1944 to May 1945, residents of the western Netherlands experienced mod-
erate to severe food scarcity caused by a German army blockade. Over 100,000
Dutch men born between 1944 and 1946 were studied to examine the effects of
gestational nutritional deciency on subsequent proneness to violence (Neugebauer,
Hoek, & Susser, 1999). Men exposed to severe maternal nutritional deciency dur-
ing the rst and second trimesters were 2.5 times more likely than men not exposed
to severe maternal nutritional deciency to develop antisocial personality disorder,
a psychiatric diagnoses characterized by recurrent use of violence and other antiso-
cial behaviors. Other studies linking poverty to poor developmental outcomes are
reviewed by Huston and Bentley (2009). Similarly, recent work by Chen, Cohen, and
Miller (2010) reveals that poverty effects on children’s stress levels (assessed by corti-
sol) is exacerbated by perceived threat and by chaos in their daily living conditions.
Y115381_C016.indd 255 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
Environmental–Genetic Interplay
Children in regions of famine, prolonged droughts, civil unrest, and wars (see next
section) are exposed to many known risk factors for the development of violence-
prone adolescents and adults. Longitudinal studies have shown that even fairly
brief exposures (e.g., a few months) to some of these risk factors can put the indi-
vidual child (or fetus) on a high-risk developmental trajectory.
Caspi and colleagues (2002) examined the interaction between monoamine oxi-
dase A (MAOA)—an enzymatic degrader that modulates neurotransmitters—and
childhood maltreatment on later antisocial outcomes. For all antisocial outcomes,
the association between maltreatment and antisocial behavior was conditional on
the MAOA genotype. Just 12% of the sample had both the genetic risk (low-activity
MAOA levels) and maltreatment; they accounted for 44% of the total convictions
for violent crime. Moreover, 85% of those who had both risk factors developed
some form of antisocial behavior. In the absence of maltreatment, the genotypic
risk factor did not manifest itself behaviorally. Similar gene–environment interac-
tions have been found for early life, environmental adversity, and psychiatric out-
comes (Caspi et al., 2003; Uher & McGufn, 2010).
If global warming brings about a world of dramatically increased environ-
mental risk and an unknown number of environmental pathogens, then it is likely
that a proportional proliferation of behavioral risks will result as these pathogenic
environments moderate genetic and neuropsychological risks within individuals.
Recall the pernicious and long-term effects of malnutrition and violent and antiso-
cial behavior. Malnutrition, particularly when it is endured during gestation, causes
a host of neuropsychological decits relating to neuronal reduction, brain toxicity,
altered neurotransmission, and other physiological effects. These neuropsycho-
logical decits also interact with genes to predict antisocial behavior. For example,
Beaver, DeLisi, Vaughn, and Wright (2010) found that neuropsychological decits
(such as those implicated by prenatal nutritionally deciency) interacted with the
low-activity polymorphism in the MAOA gene to predict violent behavior, delin-
quency, and low self-control across two time periods.
Terrorism Susceptibility
Recent research into terrorism and suicide bombers has led to a better under-
standing of the social and environmental conditions that are conducive the
development of individuals willing to use such extreme tactics (Kruglanski,
Chen, Dechesne, Fishman, & Orehek, 2009; see also Chapter 10 in this vol-
ume). Briey, these researchers have shown that such extremely violent tactics
can emerge from a “quest for personal signicance,” triggered by failure to
satisfy basic human motives to belong to a signicant group and to contribute
to its welfare. A variety of events can lead to feelings of failure and exclusion,
events such as personal trauma, loss of family through violence, and social
humiliation. Under the right (or wrong) circumstances, including (1) an avail-
able ideology to justify violence against the perceived perpetrators of trauma,
humiliation, and violent loss; and (2) social pressures to engage in violence
Y115381_C016.indd 256 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
against the perpetrators as a means of gaining or restoring one’s own signi-
cance to one’s group, even suicidal terrorism becomes a viable option to the
individual (see Chapter 3 in this volume for a related discussion of aggression
and ostracism).
Both of the heat effect and the development of violence-prone individuals focus
on violence at the individual level. This third link between climate change and
violence focuses on larger groups of people—communities, tribes or clans, soci-
eties, and countries. This is a particularly complex set of phenomena. Emerging
research from several elds suggests that rapid climate change (heating or cooling)
often leads to increases in violence. There are several ways this can happen. For
example, in subsistence economies rapid changes in climate lead to a decreased
availability of food, water, and shelter. Depending on the level of social–political
organization, such shortages can lead to civil unrest and civil war, to migration
to adjacent regions and conict with the people who already live in that region,
and even to genocide and war. Although it would be overly simplistic to blame the
bloody conicts in Africa and Asia during the latter twentieth and this rst decade
of the twenty-rst century on climate change and environmental disasters, it also
would be incorrect to ignore the role played by the economic hardships (including
starvation) wrought by the prolonged droughts and resulting resource shortages.
Civil unrest, revolutions, and wars require recruits and leaders who are willing to
risk much to gain valuable resources.
Case Studies
Historical research shows that environmental disasters, many linked to relatively
rapid climate changes, can lead to increases in group-level violence. Of course,
not all environmental disasters are caused by climate change. For example,
earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes can and do cause environmental disasters
but are not directly related to climate change. However, oods due to exces-
sive rainfall or melting glaciers, droughts, hurricanes, and cyclones are climate-
change related.
This section concerns whether environmental disasters increase violence rates
and severity, regardless of whether the environmental disaster was the direct result
of climate change.
In the recent past, evidence of such effects comes from the U.S. Dust Bowl of
the 1930s, clashes in Bangladesh and India since the 1950s, and Hurricane Katrina
in the United Sta tes in 2005 (Reuveny, 2 008). The c ases dif fer i n many ways, inc lud-
ing political organization and strength. But in each case, there is evidence that envi-
ronmental disaster led to increased interpersonal violence, a result of ecomigration
(migration of a large number of people as a result of ecological disaster).
Hurricane Katrina When Katrina hit Louisiana and Mississippi in fall 2005,
it ooded about 80% of New Orleans and destroyed much of the Biloxi–Gulfport
Y115381_C016.indd 257 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
area. More than a million people left the area. This ecomigration was to at least
30 different states, with Texas (especially Houston) absorbing the most, at least
initially. Texas ofcials ran 20,000 criminal checks and found minimal criminal
data on their Katrina immigrants. Nonetheless, Houston recorded huge increases
in homicides in the following months, relative to the same months in the year
prior to Katrina (Reuveny, 2008). There were other indicators (e.g., polls) of
tension between the long-time residents and the newcomers. However, there
was no outbreak of civil war and no evidence of armed intergroup conict. This
seems to be generally true of ecomigrations in well-organized highly industrial-
ized countries.
U.S. Dust Bowl In the 1930s, poor farming practices combined with a pro-
longed drought and strong winds to produce an environmental disaster in the Great
Plains, particularly Oklahoma. About 2.5 million people left the area, primarily for
adjacent states, but about 300,000 went to California. There are numerous reports
of hostility and violence between the residents and the ecomigrants, including
police efforts to block the migrants or to scatter them from their settlements, beat-
ings, and shack burnings (Reuveny, 2008).
Bangladesh Population pressures from a very high fertility rate combined
with unsustainable farming practices and environmental disasters (possibly related
to climate change) led to large-scale migrations to adjacent regions in Bangladesh
and across the border to India. From 1976 to 2000 about 25 million people were
affected by droughts, 270 million by oods, and another 41 million by rain and
wind storms. Making matters worse, in 1975 the Indian Farakka Barrage began
diverting water from the Ganges River to other parts of India, decreasing the
amount owing into its historic tributaries in Bangladesh. The resulting salt-water
intrusion from the Indian Ocean and increased silting of the riverbed resulted in
additional oods, erosion, and environmental degradation.
An estimated 12 to 17 million Bangladeshis have migrated to adjacent states
in India since the 1950s. Clashes between the residents and the migrants have
occurred along socioeconomic, religious, ethnic, and national lines, resulting in
thousands of deaths, especially after the 1983 elections. Indeed, 1,700 Bengalis
were killed in a 5-hour rampage in 1983.
1967 Arab–Israeli War There is historical evidence of water issues con-
tributing to conict in the Middle East at least as early as the seventh century
B.C. (Gleick, 1993). Since the establishment of Israel in 1948 the region has peri-
odically been at war, for a variety of political and religious reasons. But water
issues also play an important role in the conicts, especially issues concerning the
Jordan River basin. This basin is shared by Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria.
According to Gleick (p. 85), “one of the factors directly contributing to the 1967
War was the attempt by members of the Arab League in the early 1960s to divert
the headwaters of the Jordan River away from Israel.” (For additional examples of
important water conicts, historical as well as contemporary, see Gleick; Postel &
Wolf, 2001).
Y115381_C016.indd 258 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
Time-Period Studies
Little Ice Age Effects Following the Medieval Warm Period, the Little Ice
Age (roughly 1300–1850) ushered in cooler temperatures, shorter growing seasons,
and a host of other climate-related changes. Scholars from a variety of disciplines
have begun examining the relationships among relatively rapid shifts in climate
and a host of human population events, including war. Fagan (2000) weaves a care-
ful story of climate shifts and their impact on Europeans, linking farming practices
and outcomes, social and cultural changes, civil unrest, and war. Though careful
to avoid extreme claims of environmental determinism, he makes a strong case
for viewing rapid climate change (in this case, cooling) as contributing to war and
other forms of violence. Briey, rapid climate change disrupted food production,
leading to food shortages, famines, civil unrest, and war. This process seems par-
ticularly important in agrarian societies that do not have the political and economic
resources to effectively deal with food shortages and famine. Indeed, according to
Fagan the French revolution was fueled in part by food shortages that were largely
the result of the failure of farming practices to adapt to the changed climate.
Zhang and colleagues (Zhang, Brecke, Lee, He, & Zhang, 2007; Zhang, Zhang,
Lee, & He, 2007) took a more statistical approach to examining the question of
whether rapid shifts in climate from 1000 to 1900 were linked to wars. Using data
from the Northern Hemisphere and from China, they found statistical support for
their model, which is very similar to Fagan’s (2000).
It might seem strange to include studies of rapid cooling in a work that is
focused on global warming and violence. However, the basic model is the same
regardless of whether a rapid shift in climate is warming or cooling, ooding or
drought. A systematic change in climate that threatens basic human resources puts
stress on economic and social systems. That stress can lead to ecomigration and
conict or directly to war over resources.
Civil War in Africa Burke, Miguel, Satyanath, Dykema, and Lobell (2009)
recently analyzed civil wars in Africa from 1981 to 2002. Some models included
per capita income and form of government as well as temperature and precipi-
tation. Overall, the results showed a strong positive relation between tempera-
ture increases and civil war. For a 1°C increase in temperature, there was a 5.9%
increase in civil war. Given the base rate of civil war in this dataset (11%), this rep-
resents a 54% relative increase in the likelihood of civil war for each 1°C increase
in temperature. The authors noted that a 1°C increase is projected by 2030 and
that if future wars are as deadly as past ones an additional 393,000 battle deaths
can be expected in this region.
Additional Ecomigration and War-Related Forms of Violence
A recent report by the United Nations (Engelman, 2009) highlighted a number
of additional ways global climate change can lead to increased violence. Perhaps
the most notable is the likely increase in violent crimes committed against women
and children as a consequence of their increased vulnerability in subsistence
Y115381_C016.indd 259 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
economies that suffer an ecological disaster. With the breakdown of societal norms
and increased economic stress come increases in rape, assault, and homicide. As
far as we know, there are no studies directly linking global warming to such effects,
but such outcomes have been documented in the aftermath of severe oods, food
shortages, and war (“civil” or otherwise).
Collectively, these three ways global climate change increases human violence
suggest a rather dire future. We prefer to end on a more positive note. Action
can be taken, by individuals, groups, and governments. One obvious action is to
reduce greenhouse gas emissions, thereby reducing the magnitude and speed of
climate change. Many individuals, groups, and governments are taking actions,
albeit somewhat belatedly.
In addition to the technological and lifestyle changes being actively developed,
discussed, and implemented, it also seems worthwhile to consider an infrequently
discussed option, the potential benets of better population control. One thousand
years ago the world population was about 300 million. Currently it is about 7 bil-
lion. Some have estimated that the world population will peak at around 10 billion.
Most of that increase will take place in developing countries, with huge increases
in greenhouse gas emissions as a result of carbon-intensive industrialization and
increasing consumption. Generally speaking, as a country becomes more indus-
trialized and wealthy, the carbon footprint per person increases dramatically, and
population growth eventually slows. The conundrum we face is how to reduce total
greenhouse gas emissions while improving the quality of life of the large propor-
tion of people currently living in poverty. One recent study found that, “dollar-for-
dollar, investments in voluntary family planning and girls’ education would also in
the long run reduce greenhouse-gas emissions at least as much as the same invest-
ments in nuclear or wind energy” (Engelman, 2009, p. 26).
Developed and developing countries will be affected differently by global
warming. In some ways, developed countries will be less affected, in part because
of their locations but more importantly because they have more resources per
capita to deal with the changes. It is unlikely that famines will strike the richest
countries, for example. However, no country will be immune to the violence con-
sequences of global climate change. The heat effect on individual levels of aggres-
sion and violence applies to all countries. Similarly, it seems obvious that even
wealthy countries are likely to see increases in the proportion of children exposed
to known risk factors for the development of violence-prone youth and adults. It
is less obvious how wealthy countries will be affected by the third process, which
leads to increases in civil unrest, ecomigration, genocide, and war. But even if
developed countries do not experience sufcient economic and social stress to
induce war (civil or international), civil unrest and ecomigration within them will
likely lead to increases in violent crime, especially after ecological disasters such
as oods. Furthermore, increased poverty, civil dissolution, and wars in develop-
ing countries have an impact on developed countries. In some cases, the impact
derives from the global economy and the need for resources. Also, differences
Y115381_C016.indd 260 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
between the have and have-not countries create breeding grounds for interna-
tional terrorist groups.
What actions could reduce the likelihood of climate change induced violence?
There is some limited evidence that the heat–aggression effect on individuals can
be reduced by simply making people aware that when they are uncomfortably hot
they tend to react to minor provocations in inappropriately hostile ways. However,
given the immediacy and subtlety of the heat effect on irritability, hostile percep-
tion biases, and aggression, it is doubtful that such an educational intervention will
have a large impact.
On the other hand, the other two ways global warming increases human vio-
lence appear to be good candidates for intervention. If governments began prepar-
ing now to feed, shelter, educate, and move at-risk populations to regions in which
they can maintain their livelihoods and their cultures, we could dramatically
reduce both the development of violence-prone individuals and the civil unrest,
ecomigration, and war problems. This will cost huge amounts of money and will
require more international cooperation than our planet has ever seen. Failure to
do so will result in additional disasters for millions of people.
Anderson, C. A. (1989). Temperature and aggression: Ubiquitous effects of heat on the
occurrence of human violence. Psychological Bulletin, 106, 74–96.
Anderson, C. A. (2001). Heat and violence. Current Directions in Psychological Science,
10, 33–38.
Anderson, C. A., & Anderson, D. C. (1984). Ambient temperature and violent crime: Tests
of the linear and curvilinear hypotheses. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology,
46, 91–97.
Anderson, C. A., & Anderson, K. B. (1996). Violent crime rate studies in philosophical con-
text: A destructive testing approach to heat and southern culture of violence effects.
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 70, 740–756.
Anderson, C. A., & Anderson, K. B. (1998). Temperature and aggression: Paradox, con-
troversy, and a (fairly) clear picture. In R. Geen & E. Donnerstein (Eds.), Human
aggression: Theories, research, and implications for social policy. (pp. 247–298). San
Diego, CA: Academic Press.
Anderson, C. A., Anderson, K. B., Dorr, N., DeNeve, K. M., & Flanagan, M. (2000).
Temperature and aggression. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 32,
Anderson, C. A., Bushman, B. J., & Groom, R. W. (1997). Hot years and serious and deadly
assault: Empirical tests of the heat hypothesis. Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology, 73, 1213–1223.
Beaver, K. M., DeLisi, M., Vaughn, M. G., & Wright, J. P. (2010). The intersection of
genes and neuropsychological decits in the prediction of adolescent delinquency
and low self-control. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative
Criminology, 54, 22–42.
Boyanowsky, E. O. (1999). Violence and aggression in the heat of passion and in cold blood.
International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 22, 257–271.
Y115381_C016.indd 261 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
Boyanowsky, E. O. (2008). Explaining the relationship among environmental tempera-
tures, aggression and violent crime: Emotional-cognitive stress under thermoregula-
tory conict (The ECS-TC Syndrome). Presented at the Biannual World Meeting
of the International Society for Research on Aggression, Budapest, Hungary, July
Boyanowsky. E. O., Calvert-Boyanowsky, J., Young, J., & Brideau, L. (1981). Toward a ther-
moregulatory model of violence. Journal of Environmental Systems, 11, 81–87.
Burke, M. B., Miguel, E., Satyanath, S., Dykema, J. A., & Lobell, D. B. (2009). Warming
increases the risk of civil war in Africa. Proceedings of the National Academy of
Sciences, 106(49), 20670–20674.
Bushman, B. J., Wang, M. C., & Anderson, C.A. (2005a). Is the curve relating temperature
to aggression linear or curvilinear? Assaults and temperature in Minneapolis reexam-
ined. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 89, 62–66.
Bushman, B. J., Wang, M. C., & Anderson, C.A. (2005b). Is the curve relating temperature
to aggression linear or curvilinear? A response to Bell (2005) and to Cohn and Rotton
(2005). Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 89, 74–77.
Carlsmith, J. M., & Anderson, C. A. (1979). Ambient temperature and the occurrence of
collective violence: A new analysis. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 37,
Caspi, A., McClay, J, Moftt, T. E., Mill, J., Martin, J., Craig, I. W., Taylor, A., & Poulton,
R. (2002). Role of genotype in the cycle of violence in maltreated children. Science,
297, 851–854.
Caspi, A., Sugden, K., Moftt, T. E., Taylor, A., Craig, I. W., Harrington, H., McClay, J.,
Mill, J., Martin, J., Braithwaite, A., & Poulton, R. (2003). Inuence of life stress
on depression: Moderation by a polymorphism in the 5HTT gene. Science, 301,
Chen, E., Cohen, S., & Miller, G. E. (2010). How low socioeconomic status affects 2-year
hormonal trajectories in children. Psychological Science, 21, 31–37.
DeLisi, M. (2005). Career criminals in society. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Engelman, R. (Ed.) (2009). The state of world population 2009. New York: United Nations
Population Fund.
Fagan, B. (2000). The Little Ice Age: How climate made history 1300–1850. New York:
Basic Books.
Gleick, P. H. (1993). Water and conict. International Security, 18(1), 79–112.
Gottfredson, M. R., & Hirschi, T. (1990). A general theory of crime. Stanford, CA: Stanford
University Press.
Huston, A. C., & Bentley, A. (2009) Human development in societal context. Annual Review
of Psychology, 61, 411–437.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. (IPCC). (2007). Parry, M.L., Canziani, O.F.,
Palutikof, J.P., van der Linden, P.J. & Hanson, C.E. (Eds.). Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.
Kruglanski, A. W., Chen, X., Dechesne, M., Fishman, S., & Orehek, E. (2009). Fully com-
mitted: Suicide bombers’ motivation and the quest for personal signicance. Political
Psychology, 30, 331–357.
LaFree, G., & Drass, K.A. (1996). The effects of changes in intraracial income inequal-
ity and educational attainment on changes in arrest rates for African Americans and
Whites. American Sociological Review, 61, 614–634.
Ljung, G. M., & Box, G. E. P. (1978). On a measure of lack of t in time series models.
Biometrika, 64, 517–522.
Liu, J., Raine, A., Venables, P. H., & Mednick, S. A. (2004). Malnutrition at age 3 years
and externalizing behavior problems at ages 8, 11, and 17 years. American Journal of
Psychiatry, 161, 2005–2013.
Y115381_C016.indd 262 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
Moftt, T. E. (1993). Adolescence-limited and life-course-persistent antisocial behavior: A
developmental taxonomy. Psychological Review, 100, 674–701.
Neugebauer, R., Hoek, H. W., & Susser, E. (1999). Prenatal exposure to wartime famine
and development of antisocial personality disorder in early adulthood. Journal of the
American Medical Association, 282, 455–462.
Postel, S. L., & Wolf, A. T. (2001). Dehydrating conict. Foreign Policy, 126, 60–67.
Rahmstorf, S. (2009). Climate seminar. Presented at the COWI conference, May 11,
Kongens, Lyngby, Denmark. Downloaded January 4, 2010 from
Reifman, A. S., Larrick, R. P., & Fein, S. (1991). Temper and temperature on the diamond:
The heat-aggression relationship in Major League Baseball. Personality and Social
Psychology Bulletin, 17, 580–585.
Reuveny, R. (2008). Ecomigration and violent conict: Case studies and public policy impli-
cations. Human Ecology. 36, 1–13.
Uher, R., & McGufn, P. (2010). The moderation by the serotonin transporter gene of envi-
ronmental adversity in the etiology of depression: 2009 update. Molecular Psychiatry,
15, 18–22.
Van de Vliert, E. (2009). Climate, afuence, and culture. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Van de Vliert, E. (in press). Climato-economic origins of variation in ingroup favoritism.
Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology.
Van de Vliert, E. (under review). Bullying the media: Cultural and climato-economic read-
ings of press repression versus press freedom.
Vermeer, M., & Rahmstorf, S. (2009). Global sea level linked to global temperature.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, downloaded January 4, 2010
Vrij, A., van der Steen, J., & Koppelaar, L. (1994). Aggression of police ofcers as a func-
tion of temperature: An experiment with the Fire Arms Training System. Journal of
Community and Applied Social Psychology, 4, 365–370.
Wilkowski, B. M., Meier, B. P., Robinson, M. D., Carter, M. S., & Feltman, R. (2009). “Hot-
headed” is more than an expression: The embodied representation of anger in terms
of heat. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 9, 464–477.
Zhang, D. D., Brecke, P., Lee, H. F., He, Y. O., & Zhang, J. (2007). Global climate change,
war, and population decline in recent human history. Proceedings of the National
Academy of Science, 104, 19214–19219.
Zhang, D. D., Zhang, J., Lee, H. F., & He, Y. O. (2007). Climate change and war frequency
in Eastern China over the last millennium. Human Ecology, 35, 403–414.
Y115381_C016.indd 263 11/2/10 10:38:18 AM
... In studies such as these, the picture is clear: hotter periods of time yield higher rates of violence (for reviews, see Anderson, 1989Anderson, , 2001Anderson et al., 2000;Anderson & Delisi, 2011). These results are stable and are found using various time blocks, including years, seasons, days, or even hours (Anderson, Bushman, & Groom, 1997;Bushman et al., 2005aBushman et al., , 2005b. ...
... Additional analyses on the US city data give a more concrete idea of the magnitude of heat on annual "serious & deadly assault" rates (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011). A 1.1 C°increase in annual temperature is associated with up to 25,000 more cases of serious and deadly assault per year in the United States. ...
... Basically, the major direct effects of rapid global warming on the earth's physical systems (e.g., more severe and frequent droughts, tropical storms, local storms, sea-level rise, floods, water shortages, and access to food) indirectly increase exposure to known risk factors that can influence the development of violence-prone individuals. These include (among others) poverty, dysfunctional parenting, disrupted families, exposure to neighborhood and community violence, exposure to war and civil conflicts, poor prenatal and childhood nutrition, poor maternal nutrition, and poor living conditions (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011;Vazsonyi, Flannery, & DeLisi, 2018). ...
Much of the current rhetoric surrounding climate change focuses on the physical changes to the environment and the resulting material damage to infrastructure and resources. Although there has been some dialogue about secondary effects (namely mass migration), little effort has been given to understanding how rapid climate change is affecting people on group and individual levels. In this Element, we examine the psychological impacts of climate change, especially focused on how it will lead to increases in aggressive behaviors and violent conflict, and how it will influence other aspects of human behavior. We also look at previously established psychological effects and use them to help explain changes in human behavior resulting from rapid climate change, as well as to propose actions that can be taken to reduce climate change itself and mitigate harmful effects on humans.
... Further, families are vulnerable to an elevated level of child abuse following a disaster, possibly due to increased parental stress and decreased social support (Keenan et al., 2004). The potential psychosocial impacts of climate change are of complexity beyond the scope of this review, however, notable examples include the complex inter-relation between heat and increased interpersonal violence, as well as violent suicides (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011;Page et al., 2007;Töro et al., 2009); conflicts over increasingly scarce resources (Reuveny, 2008); mass migrations and dislocations (Agyeman et al., 2009); rising levels of pollution associated with increased incidences of mental health issues including depression (Gladka et al., 2018;Khafaie et al., 2019); and chronic environmental stress, loss of livelihoods, loss of property and even loss of cultural identity (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011;Ford et al., 2014;Fritze et al., 2008;Heyward, 2014;Maldonado et al., 2013). ...
... Further, families are vulnerable to an elevated level of child abuse following a disaster, possibly due to increased parental stress and decreased social support (Keenan et al., 2004). The potential psychosocial impacts of climate change are of complexity beyond the scope of this review, however, notable examples include the complex inter-relation between heat and increased interpersonal violence, as well as violent suicides (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011;Page et al., 2007;Töro et al., 2009); conflicts over increasingly scarce resources (Reuveny, 2008); mass migrations and dislocations (Agyeman et al., 2009); rising levels of pollution associated with increased incidences of mental health issues including depression (Gladka et al., 2018;Khafaie et al., 2019); and chronic environmental stress, loss of livelihoods, loss of property and even loss of cultural identity (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011;Ford et al., 2014;Fritze et al., 2008;Heyward, 2014;Maldonado et al., 2013). ...
Climate change is now widely recognized as the greatest threat faced by humanity for thousands of years and is known to affect the social and environmental determinants of health; including access to clean air, safe drinking water, sufficient food, and secure shelter (WHO, 2018). Anthropogenic climate change has already resulted in warming and precipitation trends that claim 150,000 lives annually, and a recent report from the WHO forecasts that between 2030 and 2050 climate change will cause an additional 250,000 additional deaths per year (WHO, 2018). The interaction between climate change, mental health, and physical health is not yet well understood. This review addresses the question of how climate change is affecting mental health and will demonstrate that climate psychopathologies really matter in the face of the climate emergency.
... Umgekehrt verschärfen die asymmetrischen Machtstrukturen weiterhin die Klimakrise: "Racism is an environmental threat because it reinforces and reproduces the dominance of the basic social structures that are behind the generation of the environmental crisis -which are the structures behind its own generation" (Hage, 2017, S. 15). Zum Beispiel kann klimawandelbedingte Wasserknappheit an vielen Orten der Welt die Trinkwasser-und Lebensmittelversorgung bedrohen und ist insbesondere für Minderheiten und sozial benachteiligte Gruppen lebensbedrohlich (Anderson & DeLisi, 2011; siehe dazu Kap. 34 "Klimawandel und Umweltkonflikte" in diesem Handbuch). ...
Full-text available
Climate Justice now! – Der Ruf nach Klimagerechtigkeit verdeutlicht, dass die Klimakrise nicht allein mittels ökologischer Modernisierung gelöst werden kann. An diesen Ausruf knüpfen Klimagerechtigkeitsbewegungen an, die den Klimawandel nicht nur als eine ökologische, son- dern auch als eine soziale Krise begreifen. Um eine sozial-ökologische Transformation und ein gutes Leben für alle zu ermöglichen, ist unserem Verständnis zufolge das Wechselspiel gesellschaftspolitischer Entwicklungen und individueller Bildungsprozesse unter einer globa- len Gerechtigkeitsperspektive in den Blick zu nehmen. Der in der Klimaschutzdebatte oft vor- herrschende Fokus auf die Veränderung von individuellen Konsum- und Lebensweisen lenkt von den notwendigen systemischen und damit politischen Nachhaltigkeitsbemühungen ab. Die Bedeutung postkolonialer Strukturen in der (Re-)Produktion von globalen Ungerechtig- keiten wurde lange Zeit ignoriert. Die Klimakrise ist Ausdruck und Ergebnis von kapitalisti- schen, rassistischen und kolonialen Macht- und Herrschaftsverhältnissen, Ausbeutungsprak- tiken sowie imperialen Lebensweisen. Klimaschutz, globale Gerechtigkeit und Frieden ver- stehen wir deshalb als eng miteinander verwoben. Das Ziel dieses Kapitels ist es, zentrale Begriffe und Konzepte vorzustellen, die zum Verständnis der Zusammenhänge von Klima- krise, Kolonialismus und sozial-ökologischer Transformation beitragen. Vor diesem Hinter- grund befassen wir uns zuerst mit den ökologischen und dann mit den sozialen sowie den politischen Dimensionen der Klimakrise. Im Anschluss stellen wir das Leitbild einer nachhal- tigen Entwicklung und die Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) vor. Danach erläutern wir am Beispiel von Postwachstum einen Vorschlag für ein alternatives Wirtschafts- und Gesell- schaftskonzept. Außerdem erörtern wir, welche Rolle und Bedeutung Bildung in einer sozial- ökologischen Transformation zukommt. Dazu stellen wir den Bildungsansatz Global Citi- zenship Education (GCE) vor, der sich auf post- und dekoloniale Theorien bezieht und dabei die kolonialen und rassistischen Gesellschaftsverhältnisse zum Ausgangspunkt des Lernens für eine sozial-ökologische Transformation macht. Abschließend folgt ein Ausblick mit wei- terführenden Forschungsfragen sowie Implikationen für die Bildungspraxis.
... Economically, losses resulting from heat stress are estimated to be several billion annually [2]. In addition, the capacity to produce goods and products will be reduced; it has been shown that CC can reduce the working capacity to 90% in the hottest months [3]. The consequences are not only economical, but they also affect society as a multiplicative threat. ...
Full-text available
The objective of this study is to analyze the positive relationship between different dimensions (knowledge, attitudes, and ability) of the Climate-Change Competence in the participants of a Massive Open Online Course called "Awareness and Training on Climate Change for Primary and Secondary Teachers". This study describes the use of this competence to introduce Climate Change into formal education and provides an example of how it can be used to design educational interventions to mobilize the students through education. We carried out a correlational research design based on mediation and moderation models using a process macro for questionnaires about the Climate-Change Competence. In this study, we used a sample of 530 people from Spain and Latin America (52% female, mean age = 36.1 years). The findings revealed that knowledge about Climate Change is a good predictor of ability and attitude. Furthermore, we predicted that the relationship between knowledge and ability would be mediated by attitude. Likewise, we hypothesized that attitude is a moderating dimension between knowledge and ability. The results supported our prediction and showed that attitude is a strong mediator in the relationship between knowledge and ability. However, the interaction between knowledge and attitude did not improve the ability to cope with Climate Change. The Climate-Change Competence is an efficient tool to introduce Climate Change into formal education. It can also be used to investigate, for the first time, the relationship between knowledge, ability, and attitude, which is essential to transform education into a necessary tool for mitigation and adaptation
... This association has entrenched itself in the English language in phrases such as 'hot-headed', 'hot under the collar' and 'seeing red'. Previous studies have used a range of research designs and statistical techniques to find any significant relationships between temperature specifically and crime at various temporal resolutions ranging from hourly (Rotton and Cohn 2000;Brunsdon et al. 2009; Baryshnikova et al. 2019) to annually (Rotton and Cohn 2003;Anderson and deLisi 2011). The results of these research studies have, however, most often produced inconsistent and often paradoxical results with some studies finding no seasonal fluctuations in crime (Pittman and Handy 1964;Yan 2004), whilst others find an increase in crimes during either the colder winter months or warmer summer months (Morken and Linaker 2000;Breetzke and Cohn 2012). ...
The association between various meteorological parameters and crime is well-established in developed contexts. In contrast in this study, we investigated the association between three weather parameters (temperature, relative humidity and rainfall) and three categories of crime in the developing township of Khayelitsha, in the Western Cape Province of South Africa. Distributed lag non-linear modelling was used to identify temporal relationships between temperature, relative humidity and rainfall, and violent, property and sexual crime over a 10-year period (2006–2016). We found hot days (defined as ≥ 25 °C) increased the cumulative relative risk of violent crime by up to 32% but were also found to be associated with a lagged increase in violent crime for at least a week thereafter. On very cold days (defined as ≤7∘C), the cumulative relative risk of property crime increased by up to 50% whereas on very rainy days (defined as ≥20mm) the risk of property crime surprisingly increased by 40%. These findings provide some additional evidence for the relationship between the atmospheric environment and human behaviour in a developing context.
Adverse mental health outcomes have been associated with high temperatures in studies worldwide. Few studies explore a broad range of mental health outcomes, and to our knowledge, none are specific to NC, USA. This ecological study explored the relationship between ambient temperature and mental health outcomes (suicide, self-harm and suicide ideation, anxiety and stress, mood disorders, and depression) in six urban counties across the state of NC, USA. We applied a quasi-Poisson generalized linear model combined with a distributed lag nonlinear model (DLNM) to examine the short-term effects of daily ambient temperature on emergency admissions for mental health conditions (2016 to 2018) and violent deaths (2004 to 2018). The results were predominately insignificant, with some key exceptions. The county with the greatest temperature range (Wake) displays higher levels of significance, while counties with the lowest temperature ranges (New Hanover and Pitt) are almost entirely insignificant. Self-harm and suicidal ideation peak in the warm months (July) and generally exhibit a protective effect at lower temperatures and shorter lag intervals. Whereas anxiety, depression, and major depressive disorders peak in the cooler months (May and September). Suicide is the only outcome that favored a 20-day lag period in the sensitivity analysis, although the association with temperature was insignificant. Our findings suggest additional research is needed across a suite of mental health outcomes to fully understand the effects of temperatures on mental health.
Among the various environmental factors that influence human health and psychophysical condition, the weather and climate play an important role. Aggressive behavior can be the result of widely understood meteorological factors, such as temperature or atmospheric pressure. This is especially true for people with a high nervous system sensitivity, such as those with mental illnesses. Difficult behaviors might result in conflicts and, in the case of a psychiatric ward, an increased risk of coercive measures being employed. In turn, this might have a negative impact on the treatment process itself and therefore the quality of healthcare. The most frequently mentioned meteorological risk factors for aggressive and auto-aggressive behavior are air temperature and humidity, atmospheric pressure, and wind speed. The seasonality of the impact of the weather (specific months or seasons) is also important. The weather can also synergistically affect the human body through the influence of different weather elements at the same time. However, meteorological factors should not be considered as the sole variable that causes aggressive behavior, for they affect both staff and patients. Therefore, they should be considered as one of the groups of elements that influence aggressive behavior.
Full-text available
In this work we emphasize the description of the conditions for the application of weighting techniques of the research questionnaire through the Cronbach’s a reliability index but also the Exploratory and Confirmatory analysis of factors to check its structural validity after descriptive statistical analysis. So, this work aims to study the components and factors evolved in the process of energy transition in the region of EMTH, whose economy based on an energy wasteful production system to a sustainable green economy one, with almost zero CO2 emissions. We have used, firstly desk research about the global experience/best practices-bibliography side, and field research done by 128 questionnaires regarding the quantitative and qualitative aspects of transition. The data-components and factors influencing the energy transition-come from 128 interviewed opinion leaders who answered to 64 questions. Data have been used for descriptive/ inferential /statistics, Cronbach’s Alpha Coefficient and Factor Analysis, giving a clear picture about the correlation among environmental, economy, social and managerial factors influencing the transition cost-effectiveness. Additionally, the Social Cost Benefit Analysis(SCBA) tool have been used to document, explore and determine well the compatibility between zero CO2 energy and economic development policies by optimizing the net benefits. The so far efficiency of Greek national and regional electric systems is moderate due to, lack of technological eco-innovations/patents, lack of operational economies of scale, in public and private sectors - small size of service and manufacturing organizations/companies.
Full-text available
A growing number of policymakers around the world have recognized climate change as an escalating security threat and increasingly point to the climate change—terrorism nexus in particular. This critical literature review provides an analysis of the current state of research on the causal and correlative links between climate change, intermediary factors—such as resource scarcity, loss of economic opportunities, and instability—and terrorism in sub-Saharan Africa. Moving beyond a review of substantive themes within the existing body of scholarly research examining this topic, this article critically evaluates the theories, assumptions, and methods behind the literature. In doing so, the review identifies noteworthy trends, as well as gaps and shortcomings in the current research. Our review finds that the majority of the literature has observed a positive correlation between climate change and terrorism. More precisely, the current body of research overwhelmingly assesses that climate change indirectly leads to terrorism via its impact on conditions often considered to be drivers of terrorism in sub-Saharan Africa. Still, gaps remain in empirically backing up these assertions and examining the relationship between climate change, intermediary factors, and terrorism in more depth. We use our critical review and analysis to guide recommendations for further research into this emerging and timely field of study.
Full-text available
The overall test for lack of fit in autoregressive-moving average models proposed by Box & Pierce (1970) is considered. It is shown that a substantially improved approximation results from a simple modification of this test. Some consideration is given to the power of such tests and their robustness when the innovations are nonnormal. Similar modifications in the overall tests used for transfer function-noise models are proposed
Everyone, everyday, everywhere has to cope with climatic cold or heat to satisfy survival needs, using money. This point of departure led to a decade of innovative research on the basis of the tenet that climate and affluence influence each other's impact on culture. Evert Van de Vliert discovered survival cultures in poor countries with demanding cold or hot climates, self-expression cultures in rich countries with demanding cold or hot climates, and easygoing cultures in poor and rich countries with temperate climates. These findings have implications for the cultural consequences of global warming and local poverty. Climate protection and poverty reduction are used in combination to sketch four scenarios for shaping cultures, from which the world community has to make a principal and principled choice soon. © Evert Van de Vliert 2009 and Cambridge University Press, 2009.
Rapid increases in crime in the United States in the 1960s and early 1970s have been puzzling in that they seem to coincide with economic growth and increased educational opportunity for disadvantaged groups, especially African Americans. We argue that these increases in crime may be more understandable in their historical context: Much of the economic expansion during the postwar period and the unprecedented gains in educational attainment for African Americans were accompanied by growing intraracial income inequality. Our annual time-series analysis of African American and White robbery, burglary, and homicide arrest rates from 1957 to 1990 confirms that intraracial income inequality is a consistent predictor of changes in arrest rates for both African Americans and Whites. An interaction analysis of dummy variables indicates that the relationship between education and crime for African Americans and Whites is contingent on levels of intraracial income inequality. For African Americans, increasing educational attainment is associated with rising arrest rates, but only during periods of growing income inequality; for Whites, increasing educational attainment is associated with reduced crime rates, bur only during periods of declining inequality.
Reflecting coping with threats to survival, national cultures differ in baseline levels of ingroup favoritism. These national baselines are mapped and explained in terms of inhabitants’ cultural adaptations to climate-based demands and wealth-based resources. A 73-nation study of compatriotism—the social branch of patriotism—a 116-nation study of nepotism, and a 57-nation study of familism support the demands-resources explanation. Compatriotism, nepotism, and familism are strongest in lower-income countries with demanding cold or hot climates, moderate in countries with temperate climates irrespective of income per head, and weakest in higher-income countries with demanding cold or hot climates. Thus, cultural echos of climatic survival hold up across three distinct group conditions of genetic survival. Integration of the three measures provides a cross-disciplinary applicable index of baselines of cultural ingroup favoritism in 178 countries around the globe.
Brian Fagan examines the dominant climate event of the last millennium-the 500-year Little Ice Age-and shows how it affected major episodes of European history. Only in the last decade have climatologists developed an accurate picture of yearly climate conditions in historical times. This development confirmed a long-standing suspicion: that the world endured a 500-year cold snap-The Little Ice Age-that lasted roughly from A. D. 1300 until 1850. The Little Ice Age tells the story of the turbulent, unpredictable and often very cold years of modern European history, how climate altered historical events, and what they mean in the context of today's global warming. With its basis in cutting-edge science, The Little Ice Age offers a new perspective on familiar events. Renowned archaeologist Brian Fagan shows how the increasing cold affected Norse exploration; how changing sea temperatures ca used English and Basque fishermen to follow vast shoals of cod all the way to the New World; how a generations-long subsistence crisis in France contributed to social disintegration and ultimately revolution; and how English efforts to improve farm productivity in the face of a deteriorating climate helped pave the way for the Industrial Revolution and hence for global warming. This is a fascinating, original book for anyone interested in history, climate, or the new subject of how they interact.
Peter H. Gleick is director of the Global Environment Program at the Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment, and Security, in Oakland, California. This article is modified and updated from Occasional Paper No. 1, "Water and Conflict," of the project "Environmental Change and Violent Conflict" of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, Massachusetts and the University of Toronto (September 1992). Helpful comments on earlier versions were provided by Jeffrey Boutwell, Fen Hampson, Haleh Hatami, John Holdren, Tad Homer-Dixon, Miriam Lowi, Irving Mintzer, Laura Reed, the late Roger Revelle, and Arthur Westing. Financial support for different portions of this work has been provided to the Pacific Institute by the Joyce Mertz-Gilmore, New-Land, and Compton Foundations, and by the Ploughshares and Rockefeller Brother Funds. 1. The earliest references to national "security" included concerns about economic issues, the strength of domestic industry, and the "proper correlation of all measures of foreign and domestic policy." For a brief history of definitions of national security, see Joseph J. Romm, "Defining National Security," Council on Foreign Relations Occasional Paper (New York: Council on Foreign Relations, forthcoming 1993). In their book, The Ecological Perspective on Human Affairs with Special Reference to International Politics (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1965), Harold and Margaret Sprout identified the environment as one factor that influences a nation's foreign policy. For discussion of the principal points in the on-going debate, see Peter H. Gleick, "Environment, Resources, and International Security and Politics," in Eric Arnett, ed., Science and International Security: Responding to a Changing World (Washington, D.C.: American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1990), pp. 501-523; Peter H. Gleick, "Environment and Security: Clear Connections," The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Vol. 47, No. 3 (April 1991), pp. 17-21; Jessica Tuchman Mathews, "Redefining Security," Foreign Affairs, Vol. 68, No. 2 (Spring 1989), pp. 162-177; Richard H. Ullman, "Redefining Security," International Security, Vol. 8, No. 1 (Summer 1983), pp. 129-153; Arthur H. Westing, ed., Global Resources and International Conflict: Environmental Factors in Strategic Policy and Action (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986). Definitional issues are discussed by Thomas F. Homer-Dixon, "On the Threshold: Environmental Changes as Causes of Acute Conflict," International Security, Vol. 16, No. 2 (Fall 1991), pp. 76-116. 2. These issues are reviewed in far more depth by Gleick, "Environment, Resources and International Security and Politics"; Gleick, "Environment and Security: Clear Connections"; Homer-Dixon, "On the Threshold"; and Daniel Deudney, "Environment and Security: Muddled Thinking," The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Vol. 47, No. 3 (April 1991), pp. 22-28. 3. "The Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer, March 22, 1985," Final Act (Nairobi, Kenya: United Nations Environment Programme [UNEP]); "The Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer, September 16, 1987"; Final Act (Nairobi, Kenya: UNEP); and the London Revisions to the Montreal Protocol, June 1990, whose text can be found in "Report of the Second Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer," UNEP/OzL. Pro. 2/3, June 29, 1990 (London: UNEP). The complete texts of all of these can be found together in Richard E. Benedick, Ozone Diplomacy, World Wildlife Fund and the Conservation Foundation (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1991). 4. For example, see President Gorbachev's speech, "Reality and Guarantees for a Secure World," published in English in Moscow News, supplement to issue No. 39 (3287), 1987; the statement by Secretary of State James A. Baker 3d on January 30, 1989, New York Times, January 31, 1989, p. 1; and comments by Senators Sam Nunn, Albert Gore, and Timothy Wirth, Congressional Record, June 28, 1990, S8929-8943. Environmental security was also a central topic of discussion among military analysts at the National War College, National Defense University symposium, "From Globalism to Regionalism—New Perspectives on American Foreign and Defense Policies," November 14-15, 1991. 5. Thomas F. Homer-Dixon, "Environmental Change and Violent Conflict," Occasional Paper No. 4, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, Mass., and the University of Toronto (1990); Ronnie Lipschutz and John P. Holdren, "Crossing Borders: Resource Flows, the Global Environment, and International Security," Bulletin...
The impact of temperature on police officers' tension, perception, and behaviour in police—offender interactions was investigated. It was hypothesized that increased temperature results in: (1) increased tension; (2) a negative impression of the offender; and (3) aggressive behaviour. The findings confirmed these hypotheses. Finally, some implications of the results are discussed.
In 2005, a hurricane named Katrina hit the states of Louisiana and Mississippi in the US, destroying properties and flooding areas. Many people left the region and still have not returned. While some of these people may eventually return, some may not, becoming “migrants.” Assuming this phenomenon will occur, is it unique? What is the role of the environment in migration? Can there be violent conflict between such migrants and residents in areas absorbing migrants? We evaluate these questions in the cases of Hurricane Katrina, the US Dust Bowl in the 1930s, and Bangladesh since the 1950s, demonstrating that environmental change can trigger large out-migration, which can cause violent conflict in areas receiving migrants. These findings have important policy implications. Climate change is expected to degrade the environment considerably in this century. Minimizing climate change-induced migration and violent conflict in receiving areas requires an engineered economic slowdown in the developed countries, and population stabilization and economic growth in the developing countries financed by the developed countries.