Sunday Aug 19, 201204:18 PM GMT
Climate change ended ancient Egyptian kingdom 4,200 years ago
The temple of Abu Simbel was built after the mega drought observed in the geological records.
The temple of Abu Simbel was built after the mega drought observed in the geological records.
Sun Aug 19, 2012 4:18PM
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Even the mighty builders of the ancient pyramids more than 4,000 years ago fell victim when they were unable to respond to a changing climate."

Marcia McNutt, the US Geological Survey (USGS)

Scientists say an Egyptian kingdom close to the Nile collapsed during the country’s Old Kingdom because it could not adapt to climate change.


A study of 7,000-year-old ancient pollen and charcoal samples from the Nile showed that the pyramid-building kingdom gave in to a 'mega drought' that plagued the region 4,200 years ago.

The draught caused famine and probably played a role in the end of Egypt’s Old Kingdom and affected other Mediterranean cultures.

“Even the mighty builders of the ancient pyramids more than 4,000 years ago fell victim when they were unable to respond to a changing climate,” mailonline quoted Marcia McNutt of the US Geological Survey (USGS) as saying.

“This study illustrates that water availability was the climate-change Achilles Heel then for Egypt, as it may well be now, for a planet topping seven billion thirsty people.”

Similar events also happened about 5,000 years ago when the Upper and Lower Egypt were unified, and when the Uruk Kingdom in modern Iraq collapsed.

“Humans have a long history of having to deal with climate change,” said Christopher Bernhardt of the USGS.

“Along with other research, this study geologically reveals that the evolution of societies is sometimes tied to climate variability at all scales - whether decadal or millennial.”

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