Horizon Social Media Analysis


Climate refugees: a status recognized…by Internet users

Awareness: 72% of Internet users worldwide believe that climate change will be responsible for migration in the near future.

In 2050, there could be 250 million climate refugees in the world according to the UN. One of the challenges of COP21 will be to find an agreement limiting climate change and natural disasters. According to data collected by COP21Horizon, 72% of those sharing their opinions on social networks agree that climate will cause migratory movements around the world in the near future.


Heads of state have to assume their responsibilities!

In 2014, 19.3 million people were displaced following a natural disaster (IDMC). Every second, one person is forced to leave according to this report. Storms, hurricanes or typhoons, Asia is the continent the most affected, followed by sub-Saharan Africa.


For a majority of Internet users, such migration could be avoided if political leaders found a solution to limit climate change. Limiting climate change to below 2°C would prevent the Pacific from engulfing a number of islands or from flooding Bangladesh, one of the countries most affected by climate migration with 542,000 displaced in 2014.

How soon ‘Climate refugee’ status?

Among Internet users aware of the migration issue, some fear economic difficulties caused by climatic disasters. Also a fear is reduced access to natural resources such as drinking water which could lead to armed conflicts, like in Syria. Hence the urgency to act.

For limiting the illegal immigration, Spain built a wall in Mellila.

Climate migration is on the rise, but for now it remains essentially a national issue. However, if extreme weather events continue, people will be forced across borders. This is one reason why some people are demanding the creation of a ‘climate refugee’ status, like for those who seek political asylum.


© Beawiharta Beawiharta / Reuters / Jesus Blasco De Avellaneda