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Climate CulturesAnthropological Perspectives on Climate Change$
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Jessica Barnes and Michael R Dove

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780300198812

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300198812.001.0001

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Scale and Agency

Scale and Agency

Climate Change and the Future of Egypt’s Water

(p.127) Chapter 5 Scale and Agency
Climate Cultures

Jessica Barnes

Yale University Press

As the source of 96 percent of Egypt’s water, the Nile is Egypt’s lifeline. Any change in rainfall in the river’s source regions under climate change will thus have a profound impact on Egypt. Climate change is not the only factor that will affect future Nile flows, however. This chapter examines three contrasting visions of Egypt’s future water supply from the Nile. It reveals how variously positioned actors attach different degrees of weight to climate change as an explanatory variable. It probes the interlinkages between the scale at which a future is imagined, the degree to which that future is seen in terms of climate change, and the notions of natural and human agency that underpin those understandings. The chapter therefore demonstrates both the power and limits of what Mike Hulme (2011) terms “climate reductionism”.

Keywords:   Water, Egypt, Climate change, Scale, Agency, Nile River

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