Overall risks from climate-related impacts are evaluated based on the interaction of climate-related hazards (including hazardous events and trends) with the vulnerability of communities (susceptibility to harm and lack of capacity to adapt), and exposure of human and natural systems. Changes in both the climate system and socioeconomic processes -including adaptation and mitigation actions- are drivers of hazards, exposure, and vulnerability (IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, 2014).

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.

Natural Hazard Statistics

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.

Natural Hazard / Development Nexus

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.

Key Vulnerabilities
  • Floods: Heavy rainfall during winter often causes flooding in roads and streets within city centers. Occasionally, floods cause loss of life, significant economic damage and loss of crops. Flood damage is aggravated by Libya’s poor drainage infrastructure.
  • Drought and Desertification: Yields of rainfed agriculture are severely low due to droughts. Libya is also faced with desertification mainly in the Jifara Plain located in the northwestern part of the country. Drought aggravates soil damage resulting from vegetation cover loss from overgrazing, groundwater depletion, over-cultivation and population growth.
  • Sandstorms and Dust Storms: Strong dry wind blowing over the desert raises and carries along clouds of sand and dust that is often so dense that it obscures the sun and reduces visibility to almost zero. Wind speeds are high, often moving dunes and sometimes wiping out roads in flat, dry regions and halting air and road transportation. Sand and dust storms are also responsible for health-related illnesses resulting from the inhalation of dust and chemical contaminants.

More information on natural hazards can be found at ThinkHazard.

  • An increase in floods might increase the rate of coastal erosion, effecting infrastructure along the coast.
  • An increase in floods might increase saline intrusion, effecting groundwater and soil productivity.
  • Temperature increases, along with a decrease in rainfall, may lead to longer and more severe droughts.
  • Temperature increases, coupled with diminishing rainfall, may intensify the effects of sand and dust storms.
  • A decrease in winter rains will negatively impact rainfed agriculture.
  • An increase in floods may damage drainage and water infrastructure.