Climate change is the largest environmental change expected this century. It is likely to intensify droughts, storms and floods, which will undoubtedly lead to environmental migrations and potential conflicts in the areas migrated to.
In the aftermath of environmental disasters such as Hurricane Katrina in the US, Rafael Reuveny from Indiana University in the US looks at the role of environmental degradation on population migration, or ‘ecomigration’. He examines its impact on areas receiving migrants and resulting violent conflict in particular. His study has just been published online in Springer’s journal Human Ecology.
People facing environmental disasters have no choice but to leave the affected area. The larger the migration and the shorter the period over which it occurs, the harder it is to absorb the migrants, raising the likelihood of conflict. For instance, migrants clash over jobs, resources and way of life, and violent interactions such as theft, beating, armed scuffles, seizure of resources and property, murders and insurgencies are likely.
In order to minimize the impact of environmental migrations, which can cause violent conflict in areas receiving migrants, Reuveny says developed countries would be wise to invest in preventive strategies both at home and in developing countries – since climate change is expected to degrade the environment considerably this century.
Reuveny’s analysis of three case studies – the US Dust Bowl in the 1930s; Bangladesh since the 1950s; and Hurricane Katrina in 2005 – shows that although climate change can spur large population movements, public policy can alleviate the pressures of ecomigration. Indeed, if a country can invest in areas affected by environmental problems, the scope of ecomigration can be reduced and transitions can be smoother as more people are likely to return to the area.
In Reuveny’s view, “minimizing climate change-induced migration and violent conflict in receiving areas requires an engineered economic slowdown in the developed countries, and population stabilization and economic growth in developing countries financed by the developed countries.” These policies form the basis of the five-step approach he advocates to policy makers.
1. Reuveny R (2007). Ecomigration and violent conflict: case studies and public policy implications. Human Ecology (DOI 10.1007/s10745-007-9142-5)
Joan Robinson | EurekAlert!
A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg
Urbanization to convert 300,000 km2 of prime croplands
27.12.2016 | Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) gGmbH
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).
Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...
Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.
The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
05.01.2017 | Event News
17.01.2017 | Earth Sciences
17.01.2017 | Materials Sciences
17.01.2017 | Architecture and Construction