Foreign PolicyForeign Policy

The Mediterranean as We Know It Is Vanishing

By Christina Lu and Anusha Rathi

01 Aug 2022 · 4 min read

Editor's Note

An FP feature looking at how some of the most touristy destinations in the Mediterranean region are also the most vulnerable to human-induced climate change.

The Mediterranean is known for its lush beaches and winding coastline—and now also its cataclysmic climate extremes, which have transformed the region into one of suffocating heat, raging wildfires, and shrinking rivers.

For weeks, Mediterranean nations have been gripped by a brutal medley of heat and drought that has disrupted agricultural production and devastated communities. Spain and Portugal are facing their driest conditions in more than 1,000 years while wildfires in Greece and France have forced tens of thousands of people to flee their homes. Across the region, rivers are drying up, leaving power supplies in limbo, and thousands of people have died from the heat.

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