So it’s settled – we are headed for the worst case estimate in terms of population of 10 to 15+ billion humans on the planet, and we are headed for a full seven degrees average global temperature rise by 2100. And it’s pretty much certain that advances in medical sciences will cause the richest 1+ billion of humanity to live substantially longer and – in some extreme cases – we can anticipate that most people born this century will be able to live indefinitely.
So it is now time we start planning for mass migration. The IPCC makes estimates that are conservatively below the above cases, and the way things are shaping up under a Trump presidency is nothing but worst case scenario’s.
So, worst case scenario the most conservative planners assume rarely dare go over a single meter by 2100 of global sea level rise. I conjecture that we will see several meters, with greenland and iceland melt accelerating. Worst case scenario, with maximum melt seems to be 15 meters.
Give that date my country – the Netherlands – is out of luck. Population density will go up explosively to a few coastal areas (I live in the Hague at +5 meters above NAP for what it’s worth) and some major cities may be lost unless they are contained with heavy sea-dikes.
World wide a sea level rise of meters means hundreds of millions of people will have to move. The time has now come to accept this fact and start with the orderly process of planning for relocation. Clearly Europe and the US will close its borders for climate and sea level rise refugees so cases such as the Netherlands will have to migrate inter-European. The most explosive rates of population growth coincides almost precisely with the geographic regions of people who are culturally, technologically and economically completely unequipped to deal with the consequences. So it seems inescapable that everyone else but India, Bangladesh, Western Africa and Middle East will militarize to deal with the menace of refugees.
We are right now politically unable to even speculate about binding international treaties. Rich countries will vehemently reject redistribution from them to poor countries in order to bribe poor countries to constrain births, so the only solution will be some sort of conference, probably somewhere in the middle of the century, where voters more or less demand immediate action from their politicians. IF you look at how utterly depraved the living conditions of human beings in the densest populated area’s in India and Western Africa these people are willing to put up with is a sign at how resistant people are to the mere idea of population constraints. Add a few billion more people and people will change their minds in a hurry.
So yes, population policies on a global level will be discussed probably in the mid 21st century and will be implemented 10-15 years later, i.e. way too late. And then the enforcement of such policies will be horrific.
The migration of maybe a few billion humans on this planet to equivalently affluent regions will be extremely violent unless we start planning right this very moment. The above is all predicated on certain assumptions – extrapolated population growth, temperature rise, sea level rise, etc. These are becoming increasingly daunting certainties and looking at the plain absurd example of a Trump presidency shirking the Paris treaties (which were not really all too serious in their scope and impact) makes the conclusion that we should start planning right now a sound conclusion. Sea level rise refugees numbering in close to a billion are now a certainty by 2100. Many of you reading this will be alive to experience this first-hand. So, where will you live by 2100?