Did climate change collapse ancient civilizations?

Did climate change cause these ancient civilizations to collapse?

Drought is the great enemy of human civilization. Drought deprives us of the two things necessary to sustain life–food and water. When the rains stop and the soil dries up, cities die and civilizations collapse, as people abandon lands no longer able to supply them with the food and water they need to live. While the fall of a great empire is usually due to a complex set of causes, drought has often been identified as the primary culprit or a significant contributing factor in a surprising number of such collapses. Drought experts Justin Sheffield and Eric Wood of Princeton, in their 2011 book, Drought, identify more than ten civilizations, cultures and nations that probably collapsed, in part, because of drought. — Dr. Jeff Masters, writing in the Ten Civilizations or Nations That Collapsed From Drought

Climate Change
Scientists documenting the impacts of climate change say it may be a factor in the boom-and-bust cycles of ancient Southwest civilizations in the US. Cliff Palace image courtesy of wunderphotographer Amtnspirit.

 


The Ancestral Puebloan (Anasazi) culture in the Southwest U.S. in the 11th – 12th centuries AD. Beginning in 1150 AD, North America experienced a 300-year drought called the Great Drought. This drought has often been cited as a primary cause of the collapse of the ancestral Puebloan (formally called Anasazi) civilization in the Southwest U.S., and abandonment of places like the Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. The Mississippian culture, a mound-building Native American civilization that flourished in what is now the Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States, also collapsed at this time. Information courtesy of www.wunderground.com


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Green Infrastructure to ‘Climate Proof’ cities

Using Green Infrastructure to ‘Climate Proof’ Our Cities

One of the consequences of our changing climate is an increase in the severity and frequency of storms and other weather-related events in many parts of North America. A 2014 TD Economics report called Natural Catastrophes: A Canadian Economic Perspective estimates that by 2020 the cost of severe weather incidents to Canada is expected to be… Continue reading Green Infrastructure to ‘Climate Proof’ cities

Harvard Business School to Host Program on Corporate Social Responsibility

From October 18-21, 2015, Harvard Business School (HBS) Executive Education will host Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) on the HBS campus in Boston. This program is designed to help executives refocus corporate social responsibility and sustainability efforts in ways that benefit society and the business. Continue reading Harvard Business School to Host Program on Corporate Social Responsibility

UN Unveils New Website to Spur CSR

UN Global Compact Unveils New Official Website Aiming to Spur Corporate Sustainability Action

Kicking off a week-long series of events celebrating its 15th anniversary, the UN Global Compact today launched its new, official Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) website at www.unglobalcompact.org. The website is designed to support business at all stages along the corporate sustainability journey – from those companies that are just learning how to integrate sustainability into their business, to the most… Continue reading UN Unveils New Website to Spur CSR

Green Chemistry Products Show Sales Growth

‘Green Chemistry’ Products Show Higher Sales Growth

A 2013 survey by the American Chemistry Society showed that more than half of its members believed the returns on investment in green chemistry R&D are higher than for standard investments. In another study conducted in 2014, 62 percent of chemical manufacturers said that their customers are interested in sustainable chemicals.

The American Sustainable Business Council… Continue reading Green Chemistry Products Show Sales Growth