Climate refugees – who are they?08.10.2022 | 13:50 |
Moving is a difficult decision from both moral and physical point of view, due to the deterioration of the situation due to various factors. We've all seen people moving abroad for one reason or another in our news feeds. The search for a place for a "better life" can equally turn out to be both a success and an unenviable failure, which will add to the world statistics on the number of failed labor migrants.
Sociology says that migration is a process that determines how the world will look in the future, reflecting the trends of modern economics and politics. However, these trends are not always driven by financial need or armed conflict. Statistics show that the steady growth of so-called "ecological migrants" can have serious consequences for demographic zoning, i.e. the distribution of the world's labor resources.
Let's analyze in more detail what is the peculiarity of this type of migration, and how it can affect the further development of events in the world.
Let's start with the fact that global warming, against the background of the "greenhouse" effect and the deployment of dirty production in many developing countries, is becoming a threat not only on paper. The actual annual increase in the average temperature on our planet increases in all climatic zones, leading to disasters, such as floods and droughts, accompanied by the destruction of the balance of flora and fauna, as well as the emergence and mutation of more and more new types of diseases.
Changes that are hard to bear in reality are forcing millions of people to leave their homes. The majority of environmental or climate refugees are those who have left their homes because of a cataclysm or a devastating catastrophe: typhoons, earthquakes, floods, etc. However, a part of the total mass of environmental refugees is significantly different from all types of migration.
The portrait of climate refugees is very atypical: they are quite wealthy, have housing and a good job, and most often they have a family. It would seem that they have everything for the life of an ordinary person who does not meet the criteria of a potential refugee. The only and perhaps rather controversial reason for their move is the gradual change in the environment in their place of residence.
A decrease in wildfowl, afforestation or mass death of trees, an increase in mosquitoes or air temperature – all these factors can be a real reason to take such a serious step as moving. Of course, this category of environmental refugees is not large, but the increase in their share indicates an increase in the importance of living in eco-zones and people's desire for more conscious consumption.
Such a rational strategy for the future can radically change the balance of power in the world: people move to countries with a more favorable climate, which, however, are developing. Developed countries with advanced industries and negative climate conditions are the main sources of such "wealthy" refugees. In turn, the developed countries themselves are filled with those who are looking for the "better life" that was mentioned in the beginning.
Experts estimate that by 2050, the number of environmental refugees may increase to 200 million people. This indicator is due to the likely cataclysms and temperature changes in many parts of the world in the future. Dependent solely on the environment, ecological migration has a mixed impact on global politics and the economy. Developed countries are forced to reckon with the largest countries in Africa, Latin America, and Asia, since most of the largest ecoregions are located on the territory of these parts of the World.