Tunisia’s ancient Olives are struggling to keep up with climate change

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Tunisia’s ancient Olives are struggling to keep up with climate change.

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Just as the Lebanese cherish their “Cedars of God,” olives are the pride of the Tunisian people. We are the world’s biggest exporters of Olive oil, and almost all of our farms are organic and non-irrigated, leaving us especially vulnerable to changes in rainfall and heat.

Welcome to Climate Blog! 

This week, meet Eman Nighaoui, a passionate young writer from Tunisia, who has just joined our team at Climate Tracker.

Greetings from Tunisia!

My name is Eman Nighaoui, and 2020 has been tough for us all hasn’t it?

This year Tunisia’s weather has become more erratic than ever. For me, it’s a relatively small issue. My pomegranate tree died this year because of the weather, and it broke my heart. But for our fisherman, where the hot weather brings storm surges and higher winds, the number of fishing days each year has shifted from 6 months to 60 days.

For our farmers and their famous olive trees, I fear they might soon see the same fate of my pomegranate. Just as the Lebanese cherish their “Cedars of God,” olives are the pride of the Tunisian people. We are the world’s biggest exporters of Olive oil, and almost all of our farms are organic and non-irrigated, leaving us especially vulnerable to changes in rainfall and heat. In February, the drought in some of our poorer regions was so bad, that our minister of religious affairs asked all Imams to “pray for rain”.

Unfortunately, their prayers were unanswered, and our Olive oil production is down by64% this year.

What gives me some hope is that in a year of drought, emerging group Youth for Climate has had a fruitful year. Recently they created an online series called “Climate Rebillioun” to spur on the discussion on climate change, and have recently organised their online Climate Strike; with youth across Tunisia sharing their photos.

I just joined Climate Tracker this month, and hope next year I can connect with many more young Arabic journalists across the MENA region. Lina Yassin and I have a dream to create our own Arabic Climate Tracker site next year. We want to create the most vibrant Arabic language climate journalism community in the world. 

 If you’d like to help us build it, please reach out!

To Read: What is the Climate Action Summit?

The Climate Action Summit is over. Some 70 Heads of Government, along with local and city leaders, and heads of major businesses, have delivered a series of new measures, policies and plans, aimed at making a big hollow in greenhouse gas emissions, and ensuring that the warming of the planet is limited to 1.5°C.

The number of states coming frontward with reinforced national climate plans (NDCs) grew remarkably today, with commitments covering some of the top emitters globally on display.

The UK, which is organizing next year’s UN Climate Conference, declared that it aims to cut emissions by 68%, compared to 1990 levels, within the next five years, and the European Union bloc committed to a 55% cut over the same time dated.

At least 24 states announced new pledges, strategies or plans to reach carbon neutrality, and several states set out how they are going even more, with resolute dates to reach net-zero: Finland by 2035, Austria by 2040 and Sweden by 2045.

Pakistan declared that its sparring plans for new coal power plants, India will soon more than double its renewable energy target, and China committed to increasing the share of non-fossil fuel in primary energy consumption to around 25% by 2030. 

About Zulker Naeen

Climate Journalist

Zulker Naeen is a South Asia Fellow at Climate Tracker. With three years of working experience, he has developed courses with the support of other Climate Tracker staff.

As a young climate advocate, his fellowship aims to share knowledge of climate change. Climate Tracker is a global media network closely works on Climate Change.

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If you have any questions, comments or want to get involved, email Zulker Naeen at naeenzulker@gmail.com – that’s me. I’d love to hear from you. And if you’ve been forwarded this email and liked what you saw, why not subscribe?

Tunisia’s ancient Olives are struggling to keep up with climate change
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3 COMMENTS

  1. […] To Read: Tunisia’s ancient Olives are struggling to keep up with climate change […]

  2. […] To Read: Tunisia’s ancient Olives are struggling to keep up with climate change […]

  3. […] To Read: Tunisia’s ancient Olives are struggling to keep up with climate change […]

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