Yemen

LOCATED IN THE southern region of the Arabian Peninsula, the Republic of Yemen has a land area of 203,849 sq. mi. (527,968 sq. km.), with a population of 22,389,000 (2006 est.) and a population density of 104 people per sq. mi. (40 people per sq. km.). Only 3 percent of the land in Yemen is arable, with 13 percent of that area being under permanent cultivation. In addition, 34 percent of the country is used as meadows or pasture, and 8 percent of the country is forested.

Yemen has a very low rate of per capita carbon dioxide emissions, being 0.8 metric tons per person in 1991, rising gradually to 1.03 metric tons in 2004. The entire electricity production in the country comes from fossil fuels, with liquid fuels being responsible for 96 percent of Yemen's carbon dioxide emissions. In terms of the sector producing the carbon dioxide in the country, 48 percent comes from transportation, with 20 percent from electricity and heat production, 20 percent from residential use, and 7 percent from manufacturing and construction.

The effect of global warming and climate change has already been dramatic in Yemen, with the alienation of some marginal arable land. The rise in temperature has made it harder to grow crops in arid parts of the country, and there has been extensive bleaching of coral reefs along the Red Sea coastline and the Socotra Archipelago.

The Yemen government of Ali Abdullah Saleh took part in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, signed in Rio de Janeiro in May 1992, and accepted the Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change on September 15, 2004, with it entering into force on February 16, 2005.

SEE ALSO: Climate Change, Effects; Drought.

BIBLIOGRAPHY. Madawi al-Rasheed and Robert Vitalis, eds., Counter-Narratives: History, Contemporary Society, and Politics in Saudi Arabia and Yemen (Palgrave Macmillan, 2004); Andrew Cockburn, "Yemen," National Geographic (v.197/4, April 2000); Nicholas Pilcher and Abdullah Alsu-haibany, "Regional Status of Coral Reefs in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden," in Clive Wilkinson, ed., Status of Coral Reefs of the World (Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network, Australian Institute of Marine Science, 2000); World Resources Institute, "Yemen—Climate and Atmosphere," http://earthtrends.wri.org (cited October 2007).

Robin S. Corfield Independent Scholar

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