Earlier this month, the United States teamed up with its southern counterparts to set up security following a large number of Central American people trying to migrate to the US. People are fleeing a number of problems that are connected to their home country, but the main driving force is what comes as a result of climate change; in addition to the damage caused by last year’s hurricane season, the effects of delays such as drought have contributed to growing food shortages.
Climatic conditions are beginning to be the cause of migration; in 2019, 72 percent of those who migrated to their homeland were climate-related. Most of these trips go to cities. In terms of migration and climate problems, the city’s mayors are leading the way in responding, often traveling faster than national governments to reduce emissions, providing assistance to migrants even when they are out of position or budget. But in the meantime, countries have decided to relocate, especially as a security issue, and have not given mayors the opportunity to prepare and make decisions. Now, it is important for city leaders to be at the table where ideas and opinions on finance are chosen.
Without urgent action, most parts of the world will soon be uninhabited. Rising sea levels, crop failures and temporary heat driving human movement. According to a World Bank report, by 2050, climate change could force more than 140 million people to relocate to just three countries – sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and Latin America. Worldwide, an estimated one billion people will be displaced from their homes in the next 30 years – less than half a lifetime. If so, human development is unlikely to be the case with such a shift in history.
It seems that those who have left their homes will settle down in the cities, which offer a variety of employment and employment opportunities. This is especially true for those who have been forced to flee, as more than 60 percent of the refugees and at least 80 percent of the people who have fled (IDP) live in cities.
Moving to cities does not come without risks. In this case, refugees and internally displaced persons may be located in remote areas and may be at risk of human trafficking, dangerous work conditions and accommodation or smuggling. Cities alone are often at risk of climate change, meaning newcomers are more likely to switch to other hazards over the course of a season.
This leaves cities facing a number of challenges, as migration increases labor and construction pressures, while climate challenges – from extreme heat and fire to floods and landslides – can disrupt people on urban boundaries. Despite this, mayors have taken steps to protect their new and existing residents as they prepare an inclusive and greener way forward that recognizes important contributions to newcomers and the resources they bring.
In Freetown, where the population is expected to double in the next 10 years due to seasonal migration from Sierra Leone, Mayor Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr’s supervisors have been working with young immigrants to clean up government waste. In the United States, Houston was home to hundreds of thousands of people who were displaced by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 but suffered catastrophic damage when Hurricane Harvey struck in 2017. In response, the city, led by Mayor Sylvester Turner, established a Resilient Houston Strategy, operational. to protect vulnerable populations and to provide options for those living on the river. In Bangladesh, about 2,000 people come to Dhaka every day, after moving to other coastal cities that are heavily affected by the storms and rising tides. Dhaka South City Corporation has set up a fundraiser from developing countries where they plan to change their urban life.
In recent months it has seen widespread awareness of global warming. In February, US President Joe Biden instructed officials to assess climate change impacts on migration, including “measures to protect and relocate” as well as opportunities to work with “territories to deal with migration directly or indirectly from climate change.” In response, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and a number of other US mayors wrote a joint letter requesting management to include them in the process.
In January, a French court ruled that a Bangladeshi man with asthma could not be deported because of severe air pollution in his country, while the same month a year earlier the UN Human Rights Committee ruled that states could not deport people who sought protection due to weather-related threats. At a recent meeting of the UN Security Council to discuss climate change, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called for greater cooperation to address the migration crisis, food shortages and escalating tensions.
However, while all of these are good alternatives, the principles that allow for climate change and migration have few ways to respond. This means that future respondents – the mayor – are left without legal assistance, funding, or the information they need to plan, reduce risks, change and care for their communities.
For many cities, the lack of access to finance and resources has been affected by the epidemic. It has been predicted that local governments will lose 15-25% of their budget this year alone. Local governments are doing less and need more energy to raise their funds and are being supported by national and international governments. Cities also need to reach out to local communities to inform them of their plans and solutions.
In a recent report “Cities, Climate and Migration” C40 Cities and the Mayors Migration Council (MMC) have demonstrated the ability of mayors to take action on time and in your migration by articulating the cities’ demands from international partners to do more. effectively.
Cities are planning to address these issues and take advantage of climate change and migration. Yet mayors cannot change the business-normally on their own. We urge governments and international organizations to join us in recognizing the role of local mayors, providing them with a seat at the decision-making table, and opening up the financial support they may need to make wise and inclusive solutions that improve the lives of refugees and migrants, as well as communities. who receive them.
The ideas expressed in this article are for the benefit of the authors only and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editor of Al Jazeera.