17 Oct 2021

2100: Climate Migrants: Ghost towns on the coast #OurClimateFutures

This video is part of Our Climate Futures – a project which takes real science to forecast what impacts and changes humanity may face as the climate crisis unfolds. This is not a news story. At least not yet.

The year is 2100 and, as the century ends in climate chaos, its impacts spin out of control. Seas have risen so that whole coastal communities have been swept away or abandoned, like this ghost town in east China.

One of the most dramatic ways which climate chaos may change the world is by reshaping its physical geography, as seas wash away coastlines.

That’s because as global temperatures rise, so do sea levels and extreme weather such as storm surges – both of which can erode and remake continents.

The UN’s climate science body, the IPCC, has drawn a direct link between climate change and migration and resettlement of people.

Most current research suggests migration resulting from the changing climate displaces people within their own country. But large-scale shifts may move people beyond borders in the future.

We set out to imagine what unchecked temperature rises may mean for densely urban regions in east China, at high risk from sea level rise.

Watch the video above to hear from experts on the science behind the story. Or find out more about Our Climate Futures here.