Skip to Main Navigation

Groundswell : preparing for internal climate migration (Vol. 2) : Main report (English)

In recent times, cross-border migration and its implications for host countries have captured high-profile global attention. But there is increasing recognition that far more people are migrating within their own countries than across borders. They move for many reasons, economic, social, political, and environmental. Now, climate change has emerged as a potent driver of internal migration, propelling increasing numbers of people to move from vulnerable to more viable areas of their countries to build new lives. This report, which focuses on three regions, Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and Latin America that together represent 55 percent of the developing world’s population, finds that climate change will push tens of millions of people to migrate within their countries by 2050. It projects that without concrete climate and development action, just over 143 million people, or around 2.8 percent of the population of these three regions, could be forced to move within their own countries to escape the slow-onset impacts of climate change. They will migrate from less viable areas with lower water availability and crop productivity and from areas affected by rising sea level and storm surges. The poorest and most climate vulnerable areas will be hardest hit. These trends, alongside the emergence of ‘hotspots’ of climate in- and out-migration, will have major implications for climate-sensitive sectors and for the adequacy of infrastructure and social support systems. The report finds that internal climate migration will likely rise through 2050 and then accelerate unless there are significant cuts in greenhouse gas emissions and robust development action. Groundswell: Preparing for Internal Climate Migration helps to put a human face on the growing development issue of people being forced to move under distress to escape the long-term impacts of climate change. Its findings must be taken seriously if the world is to sustain recent development gains and provide sustainable livelihood options for all.


  • Author

    Rigaud,Kanta K., Sherbinin, Alex de, Jones,Bryan R, Bergmann,Jonas Sebastian, Clement,Viviane Wei Chen, Ober,Kayly Jennifer, Schewe, Jacob, Adamo, Susana, McCusker, Brent, Heuser,Silke, Midgley,Amelia

  • Document Date


  • Document Type


  • Report Number


  • Volume No


  • Total Volume(s)


  • Country


  • Region

    The World Region,

  • Disclosure Date


  • Disclosure Status


  • Doc Name

    Main report

  • Keywords

    adaptive capacity to climate change; societal adaptation to climate change; impact of climate change; climate change adaptation strategy; greenhouse gas emission reduction; millennium development goal; United Nations Environment Programme; High Representative; Growth and Development Strategy; sea level rise; Population Density; change in population; climate change impact; number of migrants; climate impact; increase in population; movement of people; greenhouse gas concentration; reference scenario; impact of migration; extreme weather event; Internally Displaced Person; exploitation of resource; quality of information; national development plan; process of adjustment; global climate model; average sea level; conflict and violence; loss of asset; place of residence; climate change research; conversion of forest; Water and Agriculture; human development index; movement of refugees; slow population growth; job creation program; drinking water supply; social support system; social protection program; capacity for adaptation; average daily temperature; probability density function; social protection services; global temperature rise; climate change threat; social protection system; flora and fauna; economies of scale; degree of influence; strategic entry points; net migration rate; loss of life; average global temperature; local adaptation strategies; income generating activity; movement of worker; water availability; political boundary; internal migrant; storm surge; internal migration; crop model; human face; crop production; cross-border migration; population pyramid; Population Projection; crop failure; national border; photo credit; radiative forcing; crop productivity; Forced Migration; livelihood systems; land area; development policy; climate-sensitive sectors; vulnerable area; population model; climate event; water stress; migration trend; labor mobility; inclusive development; high emissions; water model; human intervention; Climate Risk; transportation infrastructure; empowering women; carbon dioxide; environmental stress; employment opportunities; human displacement; employment opportunity; spatial extent; future population; economic stress; development pattern; southern highlands; global emission; environmental degradation; natural hazard; livelihood opportunity; climatic condition; climate scenario; development pathway; world population; cropland area; crop yield; civil society; climate information; international framework; vulnerable group; climate sensitive; financial protection; private actor; adaptation option; personal data; satellite imagery; long-term impact; adverse climate; sustainable livelihood; political indicators; migration question; common strategies; deep uncertainty; income diversification; temperature increase; system dynamics; Environmental Resources; Nuclear Disaster; administrative support; quantitative assessment; operational design; ice sheet; water density; temperature change; climate parameter; strategic guidance; climate hazard; demographic indicator; gender dimension; national strategy; internal displacement; human mobility; agricultural practice; agricultural ecosystem; demographic research; official statistic; environmental risk; energy balance; rainfed agriculture; subsidiary right; environmental system; absolute sense; heavy rainfall; migratory movement; environmental disaster; gravity model; rural area; human interaction; cyclical migration; place attachment; animal life; natural variability; induced migration; spatial scale; short distance; social amenities; global ecosystem; saltwater intrusion; community health; enabling environment; population increase; mobility pattern; agricultural productivity; future migration; distress migration; migration pattern; migration model; Data Visualization; noncommercial purposes; climate variability; wave action; perverse incentives; coping capacity; living condition; extreme heat; habitual residence; future research; natural system; exchange flow



Official version of document (may contain signatures, etc)

  • Official PDF
  • TXT*
  • Total Downloads** :
  • Download Stats
  • *The text version is uncorrected OCR text and is included solely to benefit users with slow connectivity.


Rigaud,Kanta K. Sherbinin, Alex de Jones,Bryan R Bergmann,Jonas Sebastian Clement,Viviane Wei Chen Ober,Kayly Jennifer Schewe, Jacob Adamo, Susana McCusker, Brent Heuser,Silke Midgley,Amelia

Groundswell : preparing for internal climate migration (Vol. 2) : Main report (English). Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group.