Bosnia and Herzegovina is at risk of hydrometeorological hazards and natural disasters, which are expected to primarily affect agriculture and human health, through seasonal flooding and periods of drought. The projected impacts from climate change make BiH increasingly vulnerable to natural hazards: droughts, heat waves, heavy precipitation, landslides, and floods. The most common natural disasters are associated with heavy rainstorms that may cause mudslides and flooding of large areas of agricultural land, houses and industrial buildings, and lead to other changes in the environment. Droughts may become more frequent in some areas due to river runoff decrease or drying in the country’s lowland areas as well as from increased demand and consumption from economic development and population growth. Climate change is expected to increase risks and severity of natural disasters in BiH through more intense temperatures as well as rainfall patterns, prolonged heat waves, and water scarcity.
This section provides a summary of key natural hazards and their associated socioeconomic impacts in a given country. And it allows quick evaluation of most vulnerable areas through the spatial comparison of natural hazard data with development data, thereby identifying exposed livelihoods and natural systems.
The charts provide overview of the most frequent natural disaster in a given country and understand the impacts of those disasters on human populations.
Climate change is now recognized to have a significant impact on disaster management efforts and pose a significant threat to the efforts to meet the growing needs of the most vulnerable populations. The demands of disaster risk management are such that concise, clear, and reliable information is crucial. The information presented here offers insight into the frequency, impact and occurrence of natural hazards. Source (PDF)
Understanding natural hazard occurrence as well as historical climate conditions, in relation to development contexts, is critical to understanding a country’s historical vulnerability. This tool allows the visualization of different natural hazards or historical climate conditions with socio-economic and development datasets. Select the Development Context and either a Natural Hazard or Climate Condition and overlay horizontally by sliding the toggle left or right to gain a broader sense of historically vulnerable areas.
Data presented under Historical Climate Conditions are reanalysis products derived from ERA5-Land data. ERA5-Land is a global land-surface dataset at 9 km resolution, consistent with atmospheric data from the ERA5 reanalysis from 1950 onward. Climate reanalyses combine past observations with models to generate consistent time series of multiple climate variables. They provide a comprehensive description of the observed climate as it has evolved during recent decades, on 3D grids at sub-daily intervals.
This data has been collected, aggregated and processed by the Climate Resilience Cluster of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Earth Observation for Sustainable Development (EO4SD) initiative.
- BiH will experience increased aridity through changes in precipitation patterns, reduction in rainfall and increased temperatures. This will put strain on forests, agricultural zones and crop yields, hydropower generation, tourism areas (mountains and coastal zones) and water resource management.
- Precipitation patterns and increased variability, land use, wind, glacial and snow melt, will affect river systems. BiH has experienced catastrophic floods with increasingly dangerous and disruptive flooding and heavy rainfall, leading to built-environment destruction, fatalities and significant economic losses. BiH’s most common natural disasters include heavy rainstorms, mudslides and landslides.
- Flooding, land use change, increased aridity and deforestation are impacting land stability, particularly in BiH’s central, northern and eastern zones. This is resulting in a high degree of vulnerability to, and risk from, landslides.
- Water resources will be affected by changing temperatures, precipitation regimes, and humidity, which will have long-term implications on the amount and quality of water available.
- Droughts may become more frequent in some areas due to river runoff decrease as well as from increased demand and consumption from economic development and population growth.
- Climate change threatens to exacerbate hydro-meteorological risks such as recurring floods and drought. Prolonged drought is projected to worsen forest fires and shorten growing seasons.
- Given the country’s number of rivers, catchments and aquifers, changes to precipitation may also result in high-risk flooding scenarios. River flood hazard is classified as high for BiH, with potential for damaging river floods occurring across the country.
- BiH established its National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (2008) as part of the Civil Protection Department to support needed adaptation as well as emergency response to crises and disasters.