In this 3-minute video, Cheikh Fadel Wade takes us to his coastal hometown of Bargny, in Senegal. His is a fishing community already feeling the effects of climate-fuelled coastal erosion, rising seas, and drought. As each day passes, the choices for those who depend on the fishing industry grow ever more narrow: stay and fight for survival, or say goodbye and seek a future elsewhere.
“Young people have no other choice but to migrate to try and sustain their lives, to feed themselves and their families.”
On World Refugee Day, we honor the stories of countless communities like Bargny all over the world – stories that are sadly becoming all too common. Today, there are more refugees across our planet than at any other point in human history. 70.8 million people have been forced to flee their homes because of war, oppression, poverty and the climate crisis, with 13 million children among them. And if the fossil fuel industry continues to dig up and burn the oil, coal and gas that fuel conflict around the world this number will only grow.
Take 3 minutes to watch and share this story:
“We are not responsible for global warming. We know that when we hear about climate change… but we are the ones who suffer the consequences.” Cheikh Fadel Wade
This is what’s at stake if we do not limit warming to 1.5˚C above pre-industrial levels. The IPCC’s alarming report from October 2018 made it clear: fossil fuel production needs to be ramped down to zero, starting immediately, if we’re to stay under this red line and prevent mass human suffering, and millions more lives dsirupted every year.
In Europe alone, 35,000 known and named people have perished trying to flee from war, poverty or the climate crisis, and thousands more are surely going unaccounted for. While some politicians and sections of the media spread fear and lies about the influx of refugees, they ignore the fact that climate-fuelled crop failures and drought – which exacerbate conflict and ripple through communities like Bargny – are responsible.
We cannot let divisive narratives of hate drive our response to these intertwined crises. Now is the moment for humanity to rise up to that challenge, and commit to policies that put those at risk and those who’ve done the least to cause these crises first. There is no climate justice without migrant justice, there is no migrant justice without climate justice.
On World Refugee Day 2019, please show your love and solidarity with refugees all around the world.