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VATICAN CITY (ChurchMilitant.com) - Pope Francis is hyping the hotly contested hypothesis of "mass climate migration" despite recent scientific studies categorically stating that the claim is "without empirical scientific basis" and the product of a "self-referencing narrative."
In his preface to the Pastoral Guidelines on Climate Displaced People (PGDCP) published Tuesday, Francis notes that "the huge and increasing numbers displaced by climate crises are fast becoming a great emergency of our age, visible almost nightly on our screens, and demanding global responses."
The PGDCP calls on the Catholic Church to "promote integral ecological conversion in relation to climate-caused displacement (CCD)" and states that "the challenge of CCD is today at the heart of being a credible and witnessing Church, a caring and inclusive ecclesial community."
Adapting the words of the prophet Isaiah to fit his climate-alarmist agenda, the pontiff rephrases Isaiah 1:18–20: "Come, let us talk this over. If you are ready to listen, we can still have a great future. But if you refuse to listen and to act, you will be devoured by the heat and the pollution, by droughts here and rising waters there."
The climate crisis has been unfolding since the Industrial Revolution," claims Francis, blaming it on the "result of poor choices and destructive activity, of selfishness and neglect, that set humankind at odds with creation, our common home."
"For a long time, it developed so slowly that it remained imperceptible except to a very few clairvoyants. Even now, it is uneven in its impact: Climate change happens everywhere, but the greatest pain is felt by those who have contributed the least to it," he adds.
The PGDCP document, published by the Integral Ecology Sector of the Vatican's Migrants and Refugees Section (MRS), draws heavily from Francis' own writings and, to a lesser extent, from policy documents of globalist bodies like the United Nations and World Bank.
But the 17-page document fails to cite a single peer-reviewed study contesting the hypothesis of climate migration in its 77 endnote references.
Presenting the document at a Tuesday press conference, MRS undersecretary Fr. Fabio Baggio claimed that the climate crisis "is already a reality for millions of people throughout the world, in particular for the inhabitants of the existential peripheries."
Father Joshtrom Isaac Kureethadam, coordinator of ecology and creation at the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, insisted on "a strong nexus between climate crisis and displacement," admonishing that the climate crisis was becoming "one of the primary triggers of displacement in recent years."
According to Kureethadam, 8.5 million were displaced because of violence and conflict in 2019, while 24.9 million people were displaced due to natural disasters (out of more than 33 million newly displaced people).
Kureethadam acknowledged that the designation of "climate-caused displacement" (CCD) does not yet exist and that poor migrants are mostly displaced within their own countries "because they don't have any resources, any help to go anywhere."
But even scientists who accept the narrative of man-made climate change agree: "There is no basis for the voluminous reports of climate-induced migration."
Climate researcher Patrick Michaels notes that, despite the lack of empirical evidence, "Everyone, from the former president to university faculty and petit-bureaucrats of all stripes, to media around the world, have [sic] embraced this notion, which is a product of 'self-perpetuating false claims.'"
Citing the paper "Climate Migration Myths," written by 32 scientists and published in the prestigious scientific journal Nature Climate Change, Michaels laments that "the narrative of climate-induced mass migrations is 'biasing' scientific and policy debates 'despite the paucity of supporting evidence.'"
"Misleading claims about mass migration induced by climate change continue to surface in both academia and policy," the 32 scientists write, warning that such claims support "a false narrative that predicts large numbers of 'climate refugees.'"
"This self-referencing narrative within scientific literature and policy reports has the consequence of entrenching climate migration as a looming security crisis without an empirical scientific basis," they add.
Citing "significant evidence that migration is not solely driven by climate change" but "by a mix of climatic, socio-economic, cultural and political factors," the paper argues that "even when climate change has a role to play, it remains difficult to determine the extent of its influence."
"Categorizing 'climate migrants' as distinguishable from 'non-climate migrants' is not empirically possible in most if not all circumstances. As a consequence, predictions of mass climate-induced migration are inherently flawed," the scientists conclude.
Ironically, stoking up CCD alarmism has "not motivated people or governments to step up climate action but [has] further entrenched xenophobia and racism and contributed to the fortification of Fortress Europe," writes Kira Walker, signaling that the Vatican's document could actually be counterproductive.
"Apocalyptic predictions may grab our attention, but they can also stoke xenophobia and miss the full picture of what's happening on the ground," Alexandra Tempus concurs.
Ethiopian-German political analyst Dr. Asfa-Wossen Asserate, in his book African Exodus: Migration and the Future of Europe, establishes how, by the end of 2015, the top two countries from which refugees were fleeing had nothing to do with climate change.
"Syria was responsible for generating the greatest number of refugees," displacing over 4.9 million Syrian refugees, and Afghanistan "was estimated to have produced around 2.7 million refugees," writes Asserate.
The other nations responsible for creating the largest populations of refugees "are all African nations: Somalia (with 1.12 million refugees), South Sudan (779,000), Sudan (629,000) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (542,000)."
Of the 10 countries responsible for creating the most refugees, alongside Myanmar and Colombia, are the Central African Republic (471,000) and Eritrea (411,000).
The refugee crisis has more to do with wars, violent conflicts, rule by warlords, Islamic regimes, Islamic terrorist groups and persecution, explains Asserate. These situations have created a significant crisis for Christians and other minorities, one which Pope Francis has failed to address.