Climate change could force 216 million people to migrate by 2050

Climate change could force up to 216 million people to leave their homes and migrate within their own countries by 2050, the World Bank said in a report released on Monday.

Climate change is an increasingly potent driver of internal migration because of its impacts on people’s livelihoods and loss of livability in highly exposed locations, the report noted, adding that hotspots of internal climate migration could emerge as early as 2030 and “continue to spread and intensify” by 2050.

By 2050, Sub-Saharan Africa could see as many as 86 million internal climate migrants; East Asia and the Pacific, 49 million; South Asia, 40 million; North Africa, 19 million; Latin America, 17 million; and Eastern Europe and Central Asia, 5 million, Xinhua quoted the report.

The report is a “stark reminder” of the human toll of climate change, particularly on the world’s poorest, those who are contributing the least to its causes, said Juergen Voegele, vice president of sustainable development at the World Bank.

“It also clearly lays out a path for countries to address some of the key factors that are causing climate-driven migration,” said Voegele.

The report noted that immediate and concerted actions to reduce global emissions and to support green, inclusive, and resilient development could reduce the scale of climate migration by as much as 80 per cent.

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