Life at 50°C: Africa

How climate change is crippling Nigeria

Life at 50°C: Africa In Nigeria, Farouk and Joy both work in extreme heat. Farouk, a well-digger from a rural community in a decertified area, has to dig deeper every year to find water; when it's 43C on the surface, temperatures down the well-shaft are even hotter. In the Niger Delta, Joy makes a living by braving temperatures of 90C caused by illegal gas flares. With 2021 set to be one of the hottest years on Earth, Life at 50°C explores the human impact of climate change.
In central Nigeria, rising temperatures are leading to desertification. 'The weather now changes every year. March was very hot', explains Farouk, who digs wells. He and his team had to dig 27 feet in sweltering conditions to reach water. Meanwhile, in the Niger Delta, natural gas released through oil extraction is burnt illegally, creating a flare so hot, tapioca farmer Joy can dry her produce in a matter of hours. But she and her family want the flares stopped: 'the non-stop flares create conditions for heatwaves', says Joy. In the South, Nigerians face flash flooding and torrential rain. 'When I was a kid, the weather was not like this ... I think that life is coming to an end', explains one woman from the South.

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