19th March 2018 Millions of people in the developing world will be forced from their homes by climate change in […]
19th March 2018
Millions of people in the developing world will be forced from their homes by climate change in the coming decades.
By 2050, 140 million people could be forced to migrate internally as the effects of global warming exacerbate problems like water scarcity, crop failure, rising sea levels and storm surges, according to a new report produced by the World Bank.
It warns that a lack of action on climate could intensify the global refugee crisis in the future, and that governments need to plan for communities and populations that will inevitably have to move from their homes because of climate-induced problems.
“Climate change-driven migration will be a reality, but it does not need to be a crisis, provided we take action now and act boldly,” said John Roome, a senior director for climate change at the World Bank group.
He laid out three key actions governments should take: first, to accelerate their reductions of greenhouse gases; second, for national governments to incorporate climate change migration into their national development planning; and third, to invest in further data and analysis for use in planning development.
Within countries, the effects of climate change will create multiple “hotspots”: made up of the areas people move away from in large numbers, and the areas they move to.
“Without the right planning and support, people migrating from rural areas into cities could be facing new and even more dangerous risks,” the report’s team lead Kanta Kumari Rigaud said in a statement.
“We could see increased tensions and conflict as a result of pressure on scarce resources. But that doesn’t have to be the future. While internal climate migration is becoming a reality, it won’t be a crisis if we plan for it now.”
Kristalina Georgieva, the chief executive of the World Bank, in her introduction to the report published on Monday, said: “There is growing recognition among researchers that more people will move within national borders to escape the effects of slow-onset climate change, such as droughts, crop failure and rising seas.
“The number of climate migrants could be reduced by tens of millions as a result of global action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and with far-sighted development planning. There is an opportunity now to plan and act for emerging climate change threats.”