Dyer: Migrants will multiply with global warming
Canadian journalist Gwynne Dyer is a good military historian but he is not a deep thinker. He just parrots below the old line that global warming will lead to food shortages. He thinks that 2 degrees of warming will cause Africans to starve. He totally ignores the effect of higher CO2 levels on crops. If the desperately prophesied coincidence of slightly higher temperatures and elevated CO2 does arrive, crops will thrive. Crops LIKE warmth and LOVE CO2. A warmer climate should in fact cause Africans to eat unusually well.
It is in fact in Africa that we already see some of that. The Sahel desert area has greened noticeably in recent decades as global CO2 level have risen. Elevated ambient CO2 levels enable plants to survive with less water -- look it up, Gwynne. It's all to do with stomata.
CO2 levels are still steadily rising even though temperatures have been pretty flat in recent decades
Lucky old Italy just got two Donald Trumps for the price of one.
One of the big winners in last Sunday’s Italian election was the Five-Star Movement, whose 31-year-old leader Luigi di Maio has promised to stop sending out rescue boats to save migrants from drowning when their flimsy craft sink halfway across the Mediterranean. A “sea taxi service”, he calls it, and promises to send all the surviving illegal immigrants home.
So does Matteo Salvini, the leader of the League, the other big winner in the election. “I’m sick of seeing immigrants in hotels and Italians who sleep in cars,” Salvini told supporters at a recent rally in Milan. He pledges to send 150,000 illegal migrants home in his first year in government.
What we are seeing now, however, is a foretaste of the time when the migrant flows grow very large and the politics gets really brutal. In the not too distant future, the Mediterranean Sea and the Mexican border will separate the temperate world, where the climate is still tolerable and there is still enough food, from the sub-tropical and tropical worlds of killer heat and dwindling food.
This is a regular subject of confidential discussions in various strategic planning cells in European governments, and also in the grown-up parts of the U.S. government. Ten years ago a senior officer in the intelligence section of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff told me that the U.S. army expected to be ordered by Congress to close the Mexican border down completely within the next 20 years. And he was quite explicit: that meant shooting to kill.
Global warming will hit the countries closer to the equator far harder than the fortunate countries of the temperate zone, and the main casualty will be food production in the tropics and the sub-tropics.
So the hungry millions will start to move, and the borders of the richer countries in the temperate parts of the world will slam shut to keep them out: the United States, the European Union, Russia, South Africa, Australia. If you think the politics is ugly now, just wait.
Of course, a miracle could happen. There could be early and very deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions worldwide, so most of the catastrophe never arrives. But I’m having trouble even believing in the Easter Bunny any more. This is harder.