Planning for Climate Migration in Great Lake Legacy Cities

Author: Berkel, Derek Van; Kalafatis, Scott; Gibbons, Beth; Naud, Matthew; Lemos, Maria Carmen

Description: The possibility that climate change might make the Great Lakes region (GLR) a more attractive place for people to live has gained traction and attracted media attention. Compared with the dry Southwest, the storm-ridden Gulf region and the sea-level rise exposed East and West Coasts, the GLR may fare relatively favorably due to an abundance of natural resources and projected climate amenities. While the emergence and character of such migration is still uncertain, it is essential that GLR urban communities proactively prepare and plan for such a potential future. Understanding how these shifts might affect residents of GLR communities will be critical for a just and sustainable future and for avoiding exacerbating existing inequalities and climate vulnerabilities. Here we propose new scalable methodologies for inclusive engagement that enable wide-reaching knowledge co-creation (e.g., web-based engagement) that can meet the emergent and diverse challenges communities will face. These methodologies have the potential to not only broaden participation and improve practitioners’ understanding of different GLR communities’ preferences, but also to anticipate emerging tensions and potential synergies associated with increased population pressures.

Subject headings: Climate change; Climate migration; Migrants; Great Lakes; United States; Cities

Publication year: 2022

Journal or book title: Earth’s Future

Volume: 10

Issue: 10

Pages: e2022EF002942

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Serial number: 3854