Peru’s Economy in Peril Due to Climate Change

Peru's Economy in Peril Due to Climate Change
Thursday December 18, 2014
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The GDP of Peru is predicted to drop 15% inside the century due to effects of climate change, a recent comprehensive study announced. Environmental effects will bring detrimental damages to the fishery, agriculture and mining sectors. Fishery and mining, along with tourism, are the three leading drivers of Peru’s economy.

The study, released by a joint effort between the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Peruvian government, says that in particular fisheries and the anchovy market will take a serious dive. The impact on anchovies will in turn affect ocean food chains and reduce the numbers of fishmeal as well.

The formal title of the report, ‘The Economics of Climate Change in Peru,’ covers exactly what it states, providing evidence for why Peru’s GDP is unstable due to its vulnerability to climate change. The paper was presented at COP20 in Lima. Peru is currently dealing with seven of the nine vulnerability characteristics that the Convention established.

The tropical glaciers found in Peru, (tropical glaciers are not an oxymoron but rather glaciers found on equatorial mountains), make up 70% of tropical glaciers remaining in the world. Worryingly, evidence shows that 1/5 of these glaciers in Peru have disappeared in the last 30 years due to human-made causes. As glaciers melt they bring about a slew of problems ranging from flooding, drought, rising ocean levels, and global warming. Peru itself will see the effects of these problems in its costal areas where low, arid and semi-arid areas are at risk to rising ocean levels. Peru, a country of high biodiversity, stands to loose much more than 15% of its GDP in coming years.

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