The Southwestern United States is on the frontlines of climate change and the decades-long effects on the El Paso area will likely worsen, local and regional experts said, unless international governments curb fossil fuel emissions.
The Earth’s climate has undergone “unprecedented” and rapid change due to human activity but there is a small window to mitigate the consequences of catastrophic warming, climate experts said in a wide-ranging United Nations report released Monday.
The global impacts of climate change will worsen unless governments dramatically cut the world’s greenhouse gas emissions immediately, the report warned.
“We’ve seen in the last decade or so that the Rio Grande water supply is becoming less and less reliable, and that’s certainly going to be the case in the future. And what that does then is it places greater reliance here on groundwater,” said Alex Mayer, a professor of civil engineering at University of Texas at El Paso.