Ok, here’s what you need to know about the new @WorldBank report on climate and migration. First up - no, this isn’t an estimate of the number of “climate refugees” there are going to be. This is a report about *internal* migration [Thread]
2/ The overwhelming majority of migration and displacement linked to climate impacts is internal. People move within their own country, rather than crossing a border. Even as impacts grow, people will still look to move internally first.
3/ The report is looking at future predictions - but that doesn’t mean that migration linked to climate change isn’t already happening. It is. Many people are moving right now in complex crises in which climate change has played a role
4/ No matter how fast we cut emissions, climate change is still going to reshape patterns of migration. Rapid emissions cuts are needed, they will help. Every fraction of a degree matters. But shifts in patterns of mobility *will* happen.
5/ A lot of this movement will happen in situations of extreme stress and tragedy. But - to an extent - these humanitarian crises can be averted. The crises are avoidable, but the movement of people in some form probably isn’t
6/ The key will be helping people move in advance of a crisis. Mobility must be embraced as a way of avoiding tragedy and a way of avoiding humanitarian emergencies. This means making migration safe and legal
7/ People are already using migration as a way of adapting to climate change impacts. In the face of climate change, many people are moving as a way of protecting their lives and livelihoods - usually finding work in cities and the @WorldBank report does recognise this...
8/ … but making this movement safe means creating viable options for people to move out of harm's way. That means creating infrastructure in places that people will want to move to and protecting their rights while they are on the move
9/ It probably also means creating new ways for people to cross international borders safely and legally - and new ways for people to gain permanent residence in new countries. This kind of cross border migration isn’t happening yet. But it could be part of the solution
10/ As the impacts of climate change deepen, helping people make these journeys safely should be seen as a form of climate change adaptation. Right now, climate adaptation mostly means staying put and coping
11/ Unfortunately the ‘stay put’ approach to climate adaptation will run out of road at some point. Mobility must now start to form part of global adaptation strategies. And those strategies need to be grounded in the rights and livelihoods of people on the move
12/ Unfortunately - instead we’re spending billions on trying to prevent people from moving. Billions on militarizing borders. Billions on technology to police and surveil migrants. This is basically a huge waste of money. It’s not the infrastructure anyone needs
13/ So the World Bank report is right to point to migration as a form of climate adaptation. But this is only half of the picture. Several other key parts of the equation are missing.
14/ The first is that governments need to stop wasting money on trying to stop people moving. Instead they need to sink that money into infrastructure that means people have liveable places to move to
15/ It means opening up migration for people regardless of who they are. Right now “migration as adaptation” means moving to find work. That’s fine. But we can’t make people’s survival dependent on the (frankly, broken) economy and labor market
16/ If we want migration as a form of climate adaptation to be safe and inclusive (as the World Bank says) then it means creating economies that are safe and inclusive too. And migration options for people who can’t work. (Right now we’re a long way from that)
17/ None of this is possible while governments are wasting money militarizing borders. Crises happen when people are prevented from moving. The more we stop people moving, the more of a crisis it will become

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More from @alex_randall

10 Feb 20
We need to stop "myth busting" on climate - linked migration. You know the stuff I mean. Twitter threads and articles that innumerate the reasons that climate change isn't a driver of migration [Thread 1/ ]
Before you jump all over me, I've probably done more of this myth busting than many, so this is as much self criticism as it is criticism of anyone else.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that I think there *are* going to be 9 billion "climate refugees" or whatever this week's figure is. I'm getting at something a little more subtle...
Read 31 tweets
14 Oct 19
This is I hope a (respectful) critique of @MLiebreich 's thread about XR. It is in no way a defence of Roger Hallam, but it is an examination of XR’s politics and how they fit into the wider landscape of political action on climate change

First up I agree that Roger Hallam plays fast and loose with climate science. I agree that this is a problem. And that it does more harm than good. However I don't think that it’s Hallam's inaccurate doom mongering that has brought people out onto the streets for XR
Rather, XR provided an organisation and a platform for people who were already worried enough to take to the streets. Hallam's apocalyptic ramblings are not the driving force force behind their civil disobedience.
Read 17 tweets
4 Apr 19
Thread: So Trump has said he will cut aid and development funding to central American countries. Bad news of course. But the reaction of many liberal commentators to this is extremely worrying. [1/22]
Their response has been roughly: “without that aid money there will be even more migration from central America into the United States” [2/22]
Hang on a minute. Since when was the purpose of aid and development spending *preventing migration*? Is this really what all sorts of liberal commentators think aid money is for? [3/22]
Read 24 tweets
9 Aug 18
Oh so *now* everyone wants to know about climate-linked migration. Now that we've had a record breaking summer, you're all thinking "wait, with this happening all over the world there are going to be some impacts on migration - right?" Yes, right
But here's the thing. They may not be the changes you think. The way climate change alter s patterns of migration isn't ways straightforward. And you can't get your head around it without first understanding some basics...
Far from being a matter of speculation, there is vast and rich academic literature on this - and we can make some pretty good predictions about what is going to happen. Climate change will alter migration in some fairly predictable ways
Read 21 tweets

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