Climate change increases resource-constrained international immobility

Hélène Benveniste, Michael Oppenheimer, Marc Fleurbaey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Migration is a widely used adaptation strategy to climate change impacts. Yet resource constraints caused by such impacts may limit the ability to migrate, thereby leading to immobility. Here we provide a quantitative, global analysis of reduced international mobility due to resource deprivation caused by climate change. We incorporate both migration dynamics and within-region income distributions in an integrated assessment model. We show that climate change induces decreases in emigration of lowest-income levels by over 10% in 2100 for medium development and climate scenarios compared with no climate change and by up to 35% for more pessimistic scenarios including catastrophic damages. This effect would leave resource-constrained populations extremely vulnerable to both subsequent climate change impacts and increased poverty.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)634-641
Number of pages8
JournalNature Climate Change
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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