Climate change has a number of potential impacts on human activity including water availability, agricultural productivity, extreme temperatures and drought, the risk of forest fire and sea level rise.
The availability of water will be affected by melting of glaciers, particularly in areas such as the Indus basin and western China, where much of the river flow comes from meltwater.
Population growth, combined with changes in river run-off (as a result of changes in rainfall patterns and increased temperatures), could mean that by 2080 significantly less water is available to approximately one billion people.
Agricultural yields are expected to decrease for all major cereal crops in all major regions of production. See more about food security.
For many areas of the world, sea-level rise combined with the effect of storms will threaten low-lying coastal communities. There are many areas of dense population, important infrastructure and high-value agricultural land along coasts, which make coastal flooding particularly damaging. Flooding events could affect millions worldwide every year.
The Human dynamics of climate change map highlights some of the potential climate impacts we may experience by the end of the 21st century (2071-2100).
Last updated: 18 September 2015