Op-Ed: "Migration Will Soon Be The Biggest Climate Challenge Of Our Time"

"Climate change is nearing the point of no return. As the most recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change makes clear, even if carbon emissions were to cease tomorrow, those accumulated in the atmosphere are enough to upset many of the planet’s ecosystems for decades to come.

That is why the forthcoming COP26 summit, while necessary to promote climate change mitigation, is wholly insufficient to address the equally important agenda that faces humanity: adaptation.

As heat, rising seas and drought render swaths of the planet uninhabitable, millions, if not billions of people may eventually have to relocate to terrain in the latitudes best suited to survival. The toughest challenge that lies before us isn’t reducing emissions, it’s relocating people. Neither the IPCC nor any other agency is currently empowered to address this fundamental question of human geography.

In the postwar decades, relatively predictable patterns of migration occurred both within and across regions. The largest stock of migrants moving within any region, for example, is the 23m who moved across the borders of the former Soviet republics."

Parag Khanna reports for Financial Times September 3, 2021.

Source: Financial Times, 10/04/2021