The upshots of ecological changes may cause the movement of more than 25-30 million people in the coming decade. How can this be handled?
It is known that ecology‐correlated security challenges are intercontinental in form, driving many countries to progressively hinge on international organizations and corporations for a solution. However, this rings the alarm bell as climate is changing drastically and more natural disasters are projected due to extreme heat variations.
The significant matter is that climate security-related issues should be addressed at the highest levels as this is a transnational issue which affects the stability of the world. How can the international community respond to this new challenge?
The concerned entities and apparatuses should prepare recommendations for world leaders to extend people’s understanding on how to address such challenges which, due to climate changes, would cause instability to some countries unless crafted effective global solutions to these challenges are implemented to control any further exacerbation of eco-refugees who escape disastrous areas in their countries, seeking refuge in other states.
Thus, such structural disparities should be mainstreamed into ecological adaptation processes in order to enhance inclusion and inhibit vehemence. This requires considering two major dynamics into the process. First, structural disproportion and conflict-wise tactic as both methodologies entail customisation and inclusion of refugees in the new community.
Climate change connection
However, the more natural disasters we have due to climate change, the more eco-refugees host states will have. The issue that would rise later on is their adaptation and inclusion in their new communities where many people would be coming from various regions and countries. This will promote ethnic and race heterogeneity, increase insecurity and produce more anarchy and clashes among those groups with the citizens of host nations.
Therefore, buttressing a constructive synergy between these migrants, fashioning a unified structure, and upholding upright governance, considering interlinkages and correlations between climate alteration, exodus and security should be the next top topics at any United Nations conference or meeting because every country is expected to face these challenges which will be a real contest and trail for world cooperation and coordination to tackle such topics.
The more natural disasters we have due to climate change, the more eco-refugees host states will have.Shehab Al-Makahleh
With some countries pulling out of the climate agreement, this would be another trigger not to be able to address such challenges as they don’t want to be involved at the international level to handle these predicted movements due to climate changes.
If we collectively fail to put an end to climate changes, this would drive millions of people to escape their homelands seeking shelter in safe havens in other countries. In other words, this would cause a larger wave of asylum than what man-made disasters trigger which included amongst others the Libyan and Syrian refugees. If so to happen, there is a dire need to cultivate a charter to ensure the required shelter for eco-refugees, who would be a potential risk to their host nations.
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is witnessing a severe climate change with the worst drought waves in decades in places like Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Egypt, Libya, Lebanon, Algeria, Morocco and Mauritania. Many farmers who live on cultivation of their lands will suffer from this wave, forcing them to leave their countries due to drought without even waiting for a regional war to break out.
What happened in Syria and Libya due to wars will happen in other places in the MENA, but this time due to drought due to heat waves, millions of eco-refugees will flood Europe due to its proximity to the region. Recent studies showed that even developed nations such as the US is not safe and immune to such natural disasters which would cause huge eco-refuge from some states to others or from the US to Mexico and Canada or from both to the US.
Because of this, the number of eco-refugees will be hiking every year, a prelude to political, social and economic strains. Thus, unless human beings unify against such wave, we will face an existential threat to people’s culture, civilisation and stability.
Europe which is close to Africa and Asia, will be badly affected by migration problems in the near future, mainly from countries in North Africa which is adjacent to Europe. In 2015, a conference was held in Bonn, Germany, regarding climate.
The developed countries decided to insure 400 million migrants from the developing world who are expected to flee their countries to Europe due to climate change. They used for the first time a terminology: Insure-resilience, which aims to secure a shelter for those refugees and to include them in the communities before they turn into a source of risk to hosting nations.
Oxfam has issued a report previously about the waves of displacement due to climate change. The entity expected that the number of eco-refugees recorded during the period of 2008-2006 stood at 21.8 million people. Some of these movements were caused by Fiji Hurricane, volcanos and heat waves.
The recent fires in Greece displaced hundreds of thousands of people. Such eco-refugee influx will pose a social risk as unemployment amongst these would exacerbate the host countries’ security and stability to a great extent due to cultural, linguistic and ethnic differences.
The world should address the climate issues on one hand and should address the eco-refugees predicaments on the other. Thus, addressing them in an integrated way is therefore of utmost importance to secure a sustainable future. Since climate changes are deemed the worst ecological threat, all countries, mainly the developed, should recognise that migration waves from states which are badly affected such transformations as this poses a high national security threat and would be a catalyst to anarchy and a tension multiplier later on.
Shehab Al-Makahleh is Director of Geostrategic Media Center, senior media and political analyst in the Middle East, adviser to many international consultancies. He can be reached at: @shehabmakahleh and @Geostrat_ME