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Historic Lake Level Variability and Current Disasters on the Shores of Lake Tanganyika



Since 2019, several communities on the shores of Lake Tanganyika have been experiencing an environmental disaster triggered by a dramatic rise in the lake’s water level. Popular media reports suggest that the rise is caused by global warming. However, comparable water level rises over the last 150 years show that this only tells part of the story. Global warming may well be driving Lake Tanganyika’s current rising water level, but structural factors and policy decisions taken at local and global scales are the factors that are turning this environmental change into a disaster.