Global Change, defined as the global impact of local human activities of any kind on the functioning of the biosphere, is driven by a common force: the growth of human population coupled with an increased use of resources (energy, water, land, biodiversity, chemicals and key elements). Global impacts from local activities arise from transport processes in the hydrosphere, atmosphere and oceans, resulting in Climate Change, Desertification, Land Erosion, Water Shortage, Eutrophication, Hypoxia, Ocean Acidification, Pollution and Biodiversity loss.
The contribution of science is central to address this challenge.Scientific research will contribute to better understand, forecast and ultimately manage the risks posed by Global Change, through adaptation and mitigation measures. Global Change Research requires an important transdisciplinar components as well as critical mass.
The Balearic Islands are particularly vulnerable to Global Change due to (a) the insularity fact; (b) the strong dependence of their economy and social fabric on tourism, a sector particularly vulnerable to Global Change; (c) the particular vulnerability of the Mediterranean area, particularly of its archipielagos, to climate change, with faster warming rates and drought intensity than any other area in the world, except the Arctic.
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