The tiny island of Cyprus is reshaping itself into a regional hub for climate-change research. The country lies at the meeting point of the Mediterranean, the Middle East and North Africa — areas where climate change is expected to take a heavy toll in the coming decades, but where research capacity to address the issue is limited.

Cyprus’s president, Nicos Anastasiades, announced plans on 5 June 2019 to create a government initiative that will coordinate action against global warming across the Mediterranean and support the creation of a €30-million (US$35-million) climate-change research centre at the Cyprus Institute in Nicosia, the nation’s leading multidisciplinary research institution. “This is a priority issue for the government,” says Theodoulos Mesimeris, head of the climate-change division of the Cypriot environment ministry. The initiative will also create a comprehensive plan to reduce Cyprus’s greenhouse-gas emissions in line with the 2015 Paris climate accord.

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Water scarcity is expected to become a growing problem in Cyprus and the surrounding region with climate change.Credit: PetrosKaradjias/AP/REX/Shutterstock