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UC Berkeley study calls for resources for climate refugees

Daniel Foster
Flickr / Creative Commons

The study, produced by the Berkeley-based Othering & Belonging Institute, determined that the scarce number of protections for people fleeing from climate change-induced environmental conditions is "concerning," especially for marginalized and formerly colonized countries.

Sea level rise, for example, is expected to hit the Global South exceptionally hard, reads the report. Since 2007, around 38 percent of the world's population lives in coastal areas, with over three-quarters residing in the Global South. This demographic is predominantly concentrated in just 15 countries that make up more than 90 percent of the world's poorest rural communities along low-elevation coast lines.

And according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, more than 70 percent of the world's refugees will come from countries deemed most vulnerable to climate change-induced disasters.

In response, researchers are calling on international leaders to not only ensure refugee resettlement and community resilience resources are properly distributed across the world, but to provide reparations to colonized and developing countries to bridge the gap in resource and economic inequality.

Sunni M. Khalid is a veteran of more than 40 years in journalism, having worked has in print, radio, television, and web journalism.