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Climate change will force mass migration of 1 billion people by 2100
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) released in summer 2017 a joint report entitled “A Region at Risk: the Human Dimensions of Climate Change in Asia and the Pacific”, which showed that the region faces severe consequences for the environment, economy and human living conditions as a result of climate change.
Massive migration is foreseen all over the world by the end of the century, with the Asia-Pacific region identified as the most vulnerable if the current climate change scenario does not improve.
“Migration is happening all the time, but with unabated global warming … we’ll have to move over a billion [people],” said Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of climate science research institute PIK in a press conference.
According to the report, a temperature increase of 6°C above pre-industrial times is projected for some parts of Asia and the Pacific by the year 2100. Such increases in temperature will lead to drastic changes in the region’s weather systems, agriculture and fisheries, biodiversity, trade and urban development.
A summer heat wave known as a 3-sigma event that happens once in 740 years, and an event stronger than a 5-sigma event that occurs once in 3 million years, could become commonplace in tropical countries such as those of Southeast Asia by the late 21st century.
The living conditions that result in the tropics would make it almost impossible for people to live outside, prompting migration on a massive scale.
The following six Asia-Pacific territories are the most susceptible to climate change-related migration: Bangladesh, which has the world’s largest delta, the Philippines archipelago, China, which suffers from droughts, the Mekong Delta, which faces a serious food security issue, the flood-prone Indus Delta, and small island states like Tuvalu, Maldives and Fiji.