In Building a Resilient Tomorrow, Alice Hill and Leonardo Martinez-Diaz have put together a superb primer on responding to the impacts of climate change. …

Particularly gripping is chapter 9, which focuses on relocating people in harm’s way. For years, the issue of displacement and relocation was something of a taboo subject in international climate debates, both because it is so sensitive and because solutions are not readily apparent. …

“Of all the hard lessons in this book, managing climate migration may be the hardest,” they argue …  “[t]he earlier we start, the easier, and less costly, and less traumatic building resilience will be.”

They don’t need to use the future tense anymore.

From the New York Times – Among the World’s Most Dire Places: This California Homeless Camp



  1. Natural disasters have been part of humanity since day immemorial. Since we now have ~8B people on this planet of course more will feel the need to move. It has nothing to do with alleged changed weather pattern due to CO2 as there is no proven link between more disasters and CO2. Just more CNN, online internet access and more people living in ever more vulnerable zones such as river deltas, dry forests, crowded islands or deserts.

    Don’t believe the 24 x 7 TV hype. Advocating for more bike lanes or “sustainable” cities is fine, of course, but it will not help folks in crowded SE Asia islands or in dry California or Australia deserts. Those have always been dry and burned every so often, the key issue is that today more folks live there and more folks with cameras and internet access broadcasting gloomy fires worldwide.

    Amazon fire activity, for example, is DOWN since the 1980s, not UP as often falsely reported.

    In total, 6.735 megatonnes of carbon dioxide were released into the atmosphere by wildfires between 1 January and 30 November 2019. This value fits with the gradual declining trend in global total fire emissions since 2003, related to changing land management practices and use of fire in the tropics. (Credit: Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service/ECMWF)

    This report here shows that there’s a decreasing trend in both human and economic vulnerability, that global average mortality and loss rates have dropped by 6.5 and nearly 5 times, respectively, from 1980 to 1989 to 2007–2016 and that there is a clear negative relation between vulnerability and wealth.

    1. Why not take your points up with the scientists at NOAA, professionals who understand the second law of thermodynamics and who have actually done the climate math on a global basis and accounted for regional differences?

      Cherry picking is a well-known tactic to draw attention away from the big picture. Your narrative reflects the graduate work from the Murdoch Media School of Climate Science, Fox University Faculty of Political Science and the School of Environmental Journalism at Postmedia College. All of them subscribe to the Republican Scientific Method and are funded in a plethora of ways by the fossil fuel industry.

  2. “It has nothing to do with alleged changed weather pattern due to CO2 as there is no proven link between more disasters and CO2.”

    Oh Susie, you slay me.

  3. There is a risk in over-prescribing every negative outcome to climate change. I can’t speak for the correlation between wildfire activity and increased temperatures in Australia, but I do question the establishment of a causal link between the current climate crisis and this particular homeless encampment in California. These people are victims of feral capitalism. They are not climate refugees. Their condition may offer lessons to actual climate crisis refugees, such as the fools who’ve moved to Las Vegas and the dwindling watershed of Lake Mead. One day soon they be an unwelcome caravan of 2 million scared and desperate people. The US will flounder to redistribute them with as little gunfire and violence as possible. But brandishing every fire, flood, and mosquito bite as proof of climate change is just crying wolf.

  4. “There is a risk in over-prescribing every negative outcome to climate change.”

    At this stage of things I think we might do well to accept that risk and get on with making substantive change. There is no certainty to any of these things to be sure, but I would be hard-pressed to see the down side of being prepared for worst-case scenarios. This is how we approach most infrastructure projects AFAIK and it seems (to me) that humans deserve at least as much consideration.

  5. “But brandishing every fire, flood, and mosquito bite as proof of climate change is just crying wolf.”

    Respectfully, a bit of presumption and hyperbole on your part Dan. No one is making that huge leap here as far as I can see. Especially galling when you are barracking for measured responses from others.

    1. Respectfully, Chris, you are mistaken. This type of presumption and hyperbole is very common. The mere association of climate change with these poor folks in California is just one example. It detracts credibility from actual climate-related problems.

      1. This is what climate change looks like.

        You can just watch 3:15 to 6:05 but I find this guy’s videos to be informative, insightful and accessible and it’s worth the entire watch.

  6. The hyperbole is yours Dan. No one is claiming every disaster or mosquito bite is a result of climate change.

    But if you are sure of your thesis, then I invite you to point to other global challenges that we have under-responded to due to some (arguably) questionable over-statements. There is certainly a wealth of reports concerning climate migration, and it appears to have been going on for at least a decade.

    “Focused on the Pacific nations of Tuvalu, Nauru and Kiribati, the research found that environmental impacts likely related to a changing climate have already affected households significantly over the 10 previous years and are likely to drive migration in the future, as people move in search of more secure livelihoods.”

    It will certainly be par for the course for privileged humans to screw everyone else with a demand for incontrovertible proof before we act, and invoke the fable of the boy who cried wolf along the way. I think it’s an inaccurate metaphor, and we are already witnessing migrations due to climate-related issues, but nonetheless, I’ll point out the story doesn’t end well for the sheep.

  7. “It detracts credibility from actual climate-related problems.”

    No. it’s the false equivalency of giving equal weight to both sides of the issue that is the credibility issue. Giving equal weight to the opinion of morons and geniuses will be the end of us all I suspect.

  8. These days only a fringe like Thomas do not believe in climate change. There seem to be 2 camps in the believer and want to do something world. The first are those that want the world to wake up now and want to stress the dire state of things to help that and the other camp that want to be careful with mixing weather with climate. I think that can be a subtle line, most people on this blog probably understand it is very difficult to say any particular weather event (such as the Ausie heat wave) is climate change. They also realize climate change makes those conditions more likely so the practical difference is small. The worry is we start calling all these weather events climate change…and we get a cold weather stretch and non believers can say ‘see no climate change. ‘

  9. The Australian bureau of meteorology seems comfortable making the connection between current weather patterns and climate change.

    “Warming associated with anthropogenic climate change has seen Australian annual mean temperatures increase by just over one degree since 1910. Most of this warming has occurred since 1950.”

      1. Do you even read your own ‘evidence’?

        From your supplied link:

        “The cycles of the seasons are changing beyond that which can be explained by known forces, both ancient and modern. Every lethal wildfire since 1857 has happened at the height of summer. Until now. The size of these fires has never been seen in Australia’s history this side of summer, and certainly not starting as early as September.”

      2. Wow. Just 5 degrees was the difference going in the other direction between (until recently) 10,000 years of climate stability and two kilometres of ice overhead during the last ice age. We are heading for 3+ degrees greater average heat if emissions aren’t dramatically lowered, which will translate into you-ain’t-seen-nothin’-yet.

        The hardest part of this for people like Thomas / Susan to really grasp is that the carbon already in the atmosphere and oceans due to human activity is enough to continue the warming for decades beyond stopping emissions. It’s all just too theoretical, despite the direct evidence given by thermometers over time, let alone the laws of physics. It just doesn’t fit their political narrative.

    1. Warming is climate, individual hot spells are weather. We know (well most of us) that global warming is happening. It is difficult to pin individual hot spells on climate change…we just know there will be more and hotter hot spells because of global warming.

  10. Here’s Thomas showing his complete ignorance on the subject yet again. We’re on track for an absolute minimum of 3 degrees increase by the end of this century but it could be significantly more. If that triggers climate tipping points, which most climate scientists have determined is a given, then heating could well be completely out of our control no matter what we do.

    When the earth was just 5 degrees cooler we were in the middle of the last ice age and most of North America was under ice several kilometers thick. How do you think civilization will adapt to equatorial regions becoming increasingly uninhabitable?

    Small changes make huge differences but polar regions are heating much faster yet. While humans can quickly adapt to a point, the ecosystems we rely on for our survival cannot. The turmoil of hundreds of millions of climate refugees migrating toward the north is hardly likely to go smoothly. Canadians have shown resistance to even tens of thousands.

    With regard to your link, the premise is that the majority of fires in Australia are caused by humans – which could certainly be true. It entirely misses a point so obvious as to put the intent of the article in question. It makes no mention that once started these fires are more intense and grow faster due to a hotter dryer climate.

    The science on climate change is settled, Thomas. If you want to align yourself with the deniers, flat-earthers and those who believe the universe is 6,000 years old you go right ahead. It undermines your opinion on everything else.

      1. I thought you were all about business using any opportunity it might? And when they do (allegedly) see opportunity in promoting changes to our environmental attitudes, you’re not happy.

        Some people are never happy I guess.

      2. Really transparent, that. A group of climate skeptics writing that the science isn’t settled. What a shock.

        Source Watch has some interesting info on the deliberately legit-sounding ‘International Climate Science Coalition’ and some of its founders, like for one how they are funded by fossil fuels though the Heartland Institute. Forming a half-submerged “science” organization wielding a distinct political agenda with half-hidden carbon industry funding is such an old and stale tactic that it’s gone mouldy.

        And it’s got nothing to do with genuine science.

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