The Death of Ba’al; Climate change, war, and the end of civilisation.

From his spectral throne at the summit of Mount Zaphon, in a palace of blue lapis and silver, the Canaanite Storm God Ba’al protected the coastal city of Ugarit from the forces of destruction and chaos. As master of the life giving power rainfall and fertility, Ba’al had turned the Bronze Age backwater of Ugarit — in modern Syria — into the jewel of the Near East, delivering more than 800mm of rainfall a year — enough to support a prosperous agricultural economy and large urban population. Over three thousand years later, his name is fossilised in the language of Levantine Arabs, where the word bá’al is an adjective to describe irrigation methods that use rainwater.