cover image: A Multitemporal Snapshot of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from the Israel-Gaza Conflict


A Multitemporal Snapshot of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from the Israel-Gaza Conflict

7 Jun 2024

Israel and Hamas have been engaged in a conflict in the Gaza strip since October 7, 2023, when Hamas launched a surprise incursion into Israel killing more than one thousand people and taking hundreds more hostage. Since then, the world’s attention has been on the horrific humanitarian crises brought by the war - about 30,000 Palestinian deaths and millions displaced while Gaza is reduced to rubble. One aspect of this war, and indeed of any war, which is less discussed is the environmental impact of the conflict, including the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the use of materials and resources by the warring factions. In this article, we estimate the carbon emissions of the war in Gaza for three distinct periods; construction and fortification activities prior to the latest conflict, emissions from the first 120 days of the war (October 2023 – February 2024) based on openly available data from media reports, and emissions from future reconstruction needs of damaged and destroyed buildings and infrastructure. We estimate the total carbon emissions due to direct war activities in the first 120 days to be between 420,265 and 652,552 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e). This figure rises to 47,669,097 and 61,443,739 tCO2e when we consider prewar and postwar construction activities. This is more than 135 individual nations annual emissions, highlighting the significant climate footprint of armed conflicts and the pressing need to account for carbon emissions during war. (This manuscript represents an update covering the first 120 days, plus associated infrastructure emissions, and post-conflict reconstruction. In our previous work, we examined the first 60 days, see,
climate conflict emissions israel-gaza


Frederick Otu-Larbi, Benjamin Neimark, Patrick Bigger, Linsey Cottrell, Reuben Larbi

Related Topics