Change in the Delta
Guardian G2 & Corriere De Sella Magazine
After many centuries of struggle against foreign invaders, the farmers of Egypt's delta region - which supplies 60 per cent of the country's food - face an even greater catastrophe. Climate change, sea rise and the reduced flow of fresh Nile water threatens to erode, swamp and salinate these fertile lands, destroying the one resource needed to feed Egypt's fast growing population.
The delta region, Egypt's breadbasket, is home to two-thirds of the country’s population, but the 50 million inhabitants jostling for space face many more day-to-day issues than the predicted climate change consequences. Urban encroachment is chipping away at arable land; contaminated water is draining farmer’s profits as more is spent on fertilizers; rising saltwater is decreasing crop production.
There are more than 4,000 people per square mile in the delta; it's hard to think of any other place where humans and the environment around them are more closely intertwined.