New report details devastating consequences of unchecked climate change for South Asia
125 million migrants could be displaced; study published in run-up to climate change talks
Amsterdam, International — A new report published today estimates that 125 million people could be displaced in South East Asia by the end of the century if global temperatures were to rise by between 4-5oC. The report comes days before governments are due to meet in Thailand for another round of climate change talks.
Amsterdam, 25th March 2008 - A new report published today estimates that 125 million people could be displaced in South East Asia by the end of the century if global temperatures were to rise by between 4-5oC. The report comes days before governments are due to meet in Thailand for another round of climate change talks.
Experts warn that if greenhouse gas emissions grow unchecked, global temperatures could rise by between 4-5oC. The Greenpeace commissioned study, ‘Blue Alert – Climate Migrants in South Asia: Estimates and Solutions’ by Dr Sudhir Chella Rajan, a professor of Humanities at IIT Madras - warns that if this happens, millions would be displaced by the impacts of climate change, including rising sea levels, and droughts associated with shrinking water supplies and changes to the Monsoon season.
Greenpeace International climate and energy campaigner, Stephanie Tunmore said: “This is yet more evidence of the humanitarian disaster that will unfold if we fail to be guided by the science of climate change and act to reduce our emissions. It is also further confirmation that climate change will hit the poorest nations, where people are most vulnerable, first and hardest”.
“As we speak, governments are preparing for another round of climate talks in Bangkok, Thailand next week – the first since Bali – and there is no indication that they have grasped the urgency of the situation or the potential human cost”.
Three months ago in Bali, Indonesia, governments established the Bali Road Map, a two year negotiating process which must, by the end of 2009, result in an agreement that will see emissions peak in the next 10-15 years and reduce dramatically by 2050. The Bangkok meeting will discuss how to tackle this task and set out a work programme for the next two years.
“We need to see real progress in the next round of talks. Governments are still talking rather than acting, and in too many cases are still being dictated to by the fossil fuel industry. There is a very small window of opportunity in which to make the necessary cuts. We need to see a sense of urgency and real commitment to avoid the horrendous scenarios outlined by Dr Rajan in this report” added Tunmore.
Greenpeace believes it is possible to keep the worst impacts of climate change - such as extreme weather events, water crises and increased hunger - from putting millions of people at risk. This will take a revolution in the way we use and produce energy, and a strong commitment to stop deforestation worldwide.
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