The unseen driver behind the migrant caravan: climate change
While violence and poverty have been cited as the reasons for the exodus, experts say the big picture is that changing climate is forcing farmers off their land – and it’s likely to get worse.“The focus on violence is eclipsing the big picture – which is that people are saying they are moving because of some version of food insecurity,” said Robert Albro, a researcher at the Center for Latin American and Latino Studies at American University.“The main reason people are moving is because they don’t have anything to eat. This has a strong link to climate change – we are seeing tremendous climate instability that is radically changing food security in the region.”Migrants don’t often specifically mention “climate change” as a motivating factor for leaving because the concept is so abstract and long-term, Albro said. But people in the region who depend on small farms are painfully aware of changes to weather patterns that can ruin crops and decimate incomes.
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