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The Impact of Weather Anomalies on Migration in sub-Saharan Africa



    (Central Bank of Luxembourg, Luxembourg, and IRES, Université catholique de Louvain)

  • Jean-François MAYSTADT


    (International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Washington)



    (Central Bank of Luxembourg, Luxembourg, and Department of Economics, École Polytechnique, Paris)

This paper analyzes the effects of weather anomalies on migration in sub-Saharan Africa. Theoretically, we show how weather anomalies induce rural-urban migration that subsequently triggers international migration. We distinguish two transmission channels, an amenity and an economic geography channel. Empirically, based on annual, cross-country panel data for sub-Saharan Africa, our results suggest that weather anomalies increased internal and international migration through both channels. We estimate that temperature and rainfall anomalies caused a total displacement of 5 million people in net terms during the period 1960-2000, i.e. a minimum of 130’000 people every year. Further weather anomalies, based on IPCC projections on climate change, could lead to an additional annual displacement of 11 million people by the end of the 21st century.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) in its series Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) with number 2011034.

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Length: 80
Date of creation: 10 Oct 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:2011034
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