The Hill Calls for Climate Migration Czar – As People Move to Warm States

Among the top Google News search results today for “climate change” is an article in The Hill titled, “The Biden administration needs a climate migration coordinator.” The author says climate change is causing an increase in the number of extreme weather events, forcing people to abandon their homes and communities and migrate. However, real-world data show climate change is not causing more extreme weather events or climate migration. Indeed, census data show populations are growing in regions The Hill claims are shedding climate refugees.

The Hill says Biden should “appoint a relocation coordinator to lead a relaunched interagency working group on community-led managed retreat and voluntary relocation under the White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy.” The Hill cites recent floods, hurricanes, and wildfires as evidence of climate change making weather more extreme, yet these types of natural disasters have been common throughout history.

As discussed in multiple Climate at a Glance reports, data from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration indicate instances of floods, hurricanes, and wildfires are either relatively stable or have declined during the past 100 years of global warming.

Also, as explored in Climate Realism here, here, here, and here, U.S. Census Bureau data show people are migrating within the United States from colder states to warmer states, and from high-tax states to low-tax states.

Nor does the evidence support claims that climate change is creating waves of climate refugees abroad that will swamp America’s borders. For example, as discussed on Climate Realism here and here, data show small-island nations are not losing land to sea-level rise. Also, as shown here, here, and here, crop production continues to consistently grow and set new records as the Earth modestly warms – reducing the pressure on people in poor countries to relocate to the United States.

Writers for The Hill should acknowledge there is no evidence of a climate change migrant crisis. As a result, there is also no need for a new big government agency to handle climate change migration.

H. Sterling Burnett
H. Sterling Burnett
H. Sterling Burnett, Ph.D., is the Director of the Arthur B. Robinson Center on Climate and Environmental Policy and the managing editor of Environment & Climate News. In addition to directing The Heartland Institute's Arthur B. Robinson Center on Climate and Environmental Policy, Burett puts Environment & Climate News together, is the editor of Heartland's Climate Change Weekly email, and the host of the Environment & Climate News Podcast.

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  1. One action the government can do is to eliminate the subsidy for flood insurance for folks who build high value residences in flood plains or coastal areas historically prone to hurricanes.


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