As per a new World Bank report, rising sea levels, water scarcity and declining crop productivity could force 216 million people to migrate within their own countries by 2050. The absence of an immediate action to combat climate change, this might get worse with time.
The report, ‘Groundswell 2.0’, modeled the impacts of climate change on six regions. It concluded that climate migration ‘hotspots’ will emerge as soon as 2030. Also these will intensify by 2050, hitting the poorest parts of the world hardest.
Sub-Saharan Africa region alone would account for 86 million of the internal migrants.
With 19 million more will be there in North Africa, shows the reprt. While 40 million migrants were expected in South Asia and 49 million in East Asia and the Pacific.
Such movements are bound to strain the cities and urban centers and jeopardizing development gains, the report states.
Since the sea-level rise threatens rice production, aquaculture and fisheries. This could further create an out-migration hotspot in Vietnam’s low-lying Mekong Delta.
The World Bank futher says that conflicts and health and economic crises such as those unleashed by the COVID-19 pandemic could compound the situation.
And the number of climate migrants could be much higher since the report does not cover most high-income countries, countries in the Middle East and small island states, or migration to other countries.
The report’s authors emhasise that their findings should be seen as an urgent call to regional and national governments and the global community to act now. We all should collaborate to reduce greenhouse gases, close development gaps and restore the dying ecosystems.
Because doing so could reduce that migration number by 80 percent to 44 million people.