Claim: ‘Climate change’ could ’cause languages to die’ – ‘May affect linguistic diversity’ – ‘A leading driver of language loss’

From Climate Depot


World Economic Forum: Could climate change cause languages to die? “An increase in climate-change related natural disasters may affect linguistic diversity.”

Babbel Mag: “Climate change is also endangering the survival of many of the world’s most at-risk linguistic populations. As these communities get displaced due to rising sea levels and climatic changes that disrupt their agricultural and fishing industries, it becomes inevitably more difficult for small languages to remain viable as its speakers scatter around the globe and are forced to assimilate to local cultures.”

By: Marc Morano – Climate DepotApril 21, 2022 6:27 PM with 0 comments

Is Climate Change Accelerating Language Loss?Biological diversity and linguistic diversity are linked in ways that might surprise you.


Excerpt: The Impact Of Climate Change On Language Death

There are approximately 7,000 languages currently spoken in the world today, but as many as half of them are expected to go extinct by the end of this century. Currently, half of the world’s languages have fewer than 10,000 speakers each. When you crunch all the numbers, only about 0.1 percent of the world’s population is currently what’s keeping half of the world’s languages alive.

Of course, it’s impossible to attribute this to any one single cause. Genocide, policy, persecution and economic pressures all play a role in our increasingly globalized world. If speaking your mother tongue doesn’t make financial sense for the community because every viable job opportunity requires you to speak the more populous national language, it’s going to be that much harder to secure institutional support at school and in the media to ensure regional languages are passed down to younger generations.

However, climate change is also endangering the survival of many of the world’s most at-risk linguistic populations. As these communities get displaced due to rising sea levels and climatic changes that disrupt their agricultural and fishing industries, it becomes inevitably more difficult for small languages to remain viable as its speakers scatter around the globe and are forced to assimilate to local cultures.

And even if certain communities manage to stay in place, there’s still a sense of “you can’t go home again” when your local environment is becoming unrecognizable to you.

It’s not hard to see how climate change is directly accelerating the process of language death around the world. But is it possible that it works both ways? Does the extinction of languages also, in turn, speed up environmental decay?

This is a claim that might be a bit more difficult to prove, but it’s worth considering. Many indigenous languages are imbued with an intimate (and often unwritten) knowledge of the natural ecosystem they’re a part of — the plants, animals, and all the ways humans have learned to coexist within that matrix over many years.


World Economic Forum: Could climate change cause languages to die?

By Anouschka Foltz

Excerpt: An increase in climate-change related natural disasters may affect linguistic diversity. A good example is Vanuatu, an island state in the Pacific, with quite a dramatic recent rise in sea levels. … Researchers had just discovered the Dusner language, which had only a handful of remaining speakers, when flooding in 2010 devastated the Papua region of Indonesia, where the Dusner village is located. Luckily, some of the speakers had survived, and the language could be documented.

The impact of climate change on language lossPublished: November 26, 2018

Excerpt: It is difficult to predict the future for any particular language. While some minority languages will thrive for generations to come, many of the world’s languages are moving towards extinction within a generation.

One stressor that may be the tipping point for some communities is climate change. Many small linguistic communities are located on islands and coastlines vulnerable to hurricanes and a rise in sea levels. Other communities are settled on lands where increases in temperature and fluctuations in precipitation can threaten traditional farming and fishing practices.

These changes will force communities to relocate, creating climate change refugees. The resultant dispersal of people will lead to the splintering of linguistic communities and increased contact with other languages. These changes will place additional pressures on languages that are already struggling to survive.


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Tom Halla
April 22, 2022 6:10 am

The minor little problem is that rising sea levels are not causing atolls to disappear. Those islands have been measured to be growing, which they will as long as coral can grow faster than the sea level rise

Richard Page
Reply to  Tom Halla
April 22, 2022 7:39 am

The article does make it difficult to understand what point they are trying to make, first by mentioning Vanuatu (which has been hit by quite a few cyclones over the past 30-40 years) and then switching to Indonesia.

Reply to  Richard Page
April 23, 2022 5:57 am

These zealots don’t need knowledge, they already have certainty.

Climate change – is there nothing it can’t do?

Meanwhile, is humanity enriched by 10,000 different ways to say “toe”? I know Douglas Adams joked that by enabling diverse cultures to finally understand each other, the Babel Fish caused more wars and calamity than any other factor in the known universe, but I still think the vast majority of humanity would be better off having fewer obscure languages.

Encouraging education-poor Maoris to devote more time to learning Maoritanga is not going to help them compete in the global marketplace (or even within New Zealand, except to acquire jobs in government-subsidised institutions).

It would be like forcing all English children to spend hours mastering Anglo-Saxon and Norse so they could “reclaim” their culture.

Languages come and go. They evolve. They’re a means to an end, not an end in themselves.

Last edited 1 year ago by BigJim
Alan the Brit
Reply to  Observer
April 23, 2022 10:45 pm

Oh, Anglo-Saxon, from the early school days I learnt an awful lot of Anglo-Saxon playing rugby/football on & off the pitch, & even in the playground!!! Some Anglo-Saxon has travelled the world!!! 😉

Michael S. Kelly
Reply to  Tom Halla
April 22, 2022 9:22 pm

Yes, there is no problem atoll.

David Elstrom
April 22, 2022 6:31 am

Climate Change scammers never disappoint. Every time you think they have reached bottom for ridiculous hysteria, they plumb new depths.

Reply to  David Elstrom
April 22, 2022 7:31 am

All the left has to support their agenda of replacing freedom with centralized control is a bottomless pit of emotion triggering rhetoric that has gone so over the top, even those on the left who can think rationally are starting to notice. Climate alarmism is just one of many examples.

Gregory Woods
April 22, 2022 6:31 am

BS at its finest…

Steve Case
Reply to  Gregory Woods
April 22, 2022 7:11 am

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
First chuckle of my day (-:

Reply to  Gregory Woods
April 22, 2022 7:31 am

Was this a late April Fools day joke?

Joao Martins
April 22, 2022 6:36 am

‘Climate change’ could ’cause languages to die’


The Medieval Warm Period, though its occurrence has been contested by several climate scientists, was the cause of Latin being extinguished! It only continued to be written and eventually spoken for a few centuries by a small minority (about 3%) of politically conservative climate deniers entrenched in the mathematical, physical, medical and other sciences.

Reply to  Joao Martins
April 22, 2022 8:27 am

Climate change is going to cause people to forget how to perform the steps necessary for reproduction.

April 22, 2022 6:41 am

“Climate change”…now blamed for the loss of some languages…maybe. Just more BS from the leftists in an attempt to further control the folks. And they make big bank from doing so.
Amazing. I really wish I’d seen this coming when I was in college, I would have changed my major to something more lucrative. Such as climate studies, or something.
Just sayin’.

April 22, 2022 6:49 am

Ummm… why is language diversity important? Humans have been working very hard to overcome language barriers for millenia.Encouraging language unity would be vastly more beneficial. Just because something exists doesn’t make it worth preserving.

Steve Case
Reply to  stinkerp
April 22, 2022 7:18 am

Exactly. The life blood of left-wing politics, and that’s the climate mob in spades, need a steady supply of poor people to be led by scaring them with H.L. Mencken’s imaginary hobgoblins. What better way to do that than keeping them ignorant with language barriers.

Curious George
Reply to  stinkerp
April 22, 2022 7:37 am

The Tower of Babel (Hebrew: מִגְדַּל בָּבֶל‎, Migdal Bavel) narrative in Genesis 11:1–9 is an origin myth meant to explain why the world’s peoples speak different languages.[According to the story, a united human race in the generations following the Great Flood, speaking a single language and migrating eastward, comes to the land of Shinar (שִׁנְעָר‎). There they agree to build a city and a tower tall enough to reach heaven. God, observing their city and tower, confounds their speech so that they can no longer understand each other, and scatters them around the world. [Wikipedia]

Curious George
Reply to  stinkerp
April 22, 2022 7:42 am

Why did my quote from Wikipedia on the Tower of Babel disappear?

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Curious George
April 22, 2022 10:23 am

I can see your Wikipedia post.

Curious George
Reply to  Tom Abbott
April 22, 2022 10:35 am

It took a short leave of absence.

Not Chicken Little
Reply to  Curious George
April 22, 2022 4:23 pm

CO2 did it.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Curious George
April 22, 2022 5:02 pm

I can think of two possibilities for a delay before it showed up.
There was a time when more than 3 links in a comment was discouraged. You’ve got 5.
They may also need to check for security issues to make sure there aren’t any links like the ones we’re warned not to click on in unsolicited emails.

Rick C
Reply to  stinkerp
April 22, 2022 11:30 am

The internet and social media are in the process of teaching everyone English. Other languages will, of course, survive for generations, but English is already nearly everyone’s second language.

April 22, 2022 6:50 am

I think modernisation is a more likely reason for the loss of languages that almost nobody speaks. I think its a good swap. Wait a generation or two and ask the youngsters if they would prefer to speak their old language and live like their grandparents or keep their mod cons, they’ll look up from their mobile phone and say uh.

Ben Vorlich
April 22, 2022 7:01 am

I blame American TV, that is if anything is causing this. Not that there is anything wrong withAmerican TV Per Se.

Just as likely are economi drivers

jack Adams
April 22, 2022 7:05 am

When you think that the Babylon Bee can’t get any funnier, we have “experts” beating them every time. But at least this “study” only cost taxpayers a bazillion bucks to make us smarter.

Frank from NoVA
April 22, 2022 7:06 am

Well, there’s always Esperanto…

Ed Zuiderwijk
Reply to  Frank from NoVA
April 22, 2022 12:59 pm

Ecoranto, you mean?

Michael E McHenry
April 22, 2022 7:23 am

Globalization will wiped them out not climate.

Gordon A. Dressler
April 22, 2022 7:30 am

And here, all along, I thought that is was the warming upon exiting Earth’s last glacial interval and going into the Holocene optimum (starting about 9,000 years ago) that enabled humans to become civilized with the associated widespread diversification of humanity into the temperate and even polar zones and associated development of many different languages/dialects.

” . . . together with what is known of the cultural history of the peoples concerned, makes clear the continuous historical connections linking French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and Romanian with the spoken (“vulgar”) Latin of the western Roman Empire. This group constitutes the Romance subfamily of languages and is an example of how, as the result of linguistic change over a wide area, a group of distinct, though historically related, languages comes into being.”
” . . . and it can be assumed that a similar course of events gave rise to the separate Germanic languages (English, German, Dutch, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, and some others), though in this family the original unitary language is not known historically but inferred as ‘Common Germanic’ or ‘Proto-Germanic and tentatively assigned to early in the 1st millennium BCE as the period before separation began.”
— (source above quoted text: )

Now I am being asked to believe—being mindful that the current meme of “climate change™ ” is currently only associated with global warming—by the above articles from,, and that the benefits of living in a warming world have suddenly reversed and are threatening to cause a decline in language diversity.

Sorry, I ain’t buying what they’re selling.

IMHO, the biggest threat to language diversification on Earth is the use of widespread verbal and written communication between diverse races and cultures . . . in this regard the dominant language threatens survival of the less dominant languages.

As but one example, just look at the rapid decline in use, and approaching extinction, of all native American languages in less than 400 years as a resulting of coming up against the European English language.

Last edited 1 year ago by ToldYouSo
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
April 22, 2022 8:48 am

Well, maybe climate change is causing some or all of these things, but the paper hasn’t made the point that humans are causing it. Maybe the writers are coming round to the idea that what small changes there are are all natural.

Always the optimist, me.

Shoki Kaneda
April 22, 2022 7:34 am

Languages have come and gone since humans first spoke. Climate change doubtless caused some of them to disappear. But, that is not the current problem. Encroaching “civilization” is the likely culprit.

Richard Page
April 22, 2022 7:36 am

The 2010 flooding in Papua, Indonesia was caused by a swollen river bursting it’s banks and inundating large areas with mudslides. Officials were quick to blame heavy rains and climate change for this disaster, despite widespread evidence that illegal logging and deforestation had provided ideal conditions for mudslides to cause major damage. This area of Indonesia had experienced heavy rains before this incident but, in conjunction with the changes in land use, several villages experienced massive damage and loss of life. Not climate change.

April 22, 2022 7:36 am

“While some minority languages will thrive for generations to come, many of the world’s languages are moving towards extinction within a generation.”

Oh No, this has NEVER happened before!

I really don’t get this “nothing can ever change” mindset…

Trying to Play Nice
April 22, 2022 7:49 am

Why is language diversity desireable in the first place? If we all spoke the same language wouldn’t we understand each other mch better?

Edward Sager
April 22, 2022 7:53 am

Ho, hum… guess I’ll have to give up my lifelong dream of being able to speak fluent Athabaskan.

Reply to  Edward Sager
April 22, 2022 9:37 am

You could still speak in that tongue even though nobody else would understand you.

I mean, who understands the babble that issues from Justin Trudeau’s gob when he’s been asked a simple question.

alex mentes
April 22, 2022 7:55 am

Bring back Esparanto

Richard Page
Reply to  alex mentes
April 22, 2022 10:34 am

Did it ever go away?

jeffery p
April 22, 2022 8:00 am

Climate change causes everything.

This is surreal. The islands and atolls aren’t sinking or disappearing below rising oceans. But let’s ignore that fact and instead pretend it is happening because the models say so.

Actually, I believe the writers at Babbel Mag just don’t know the difference.

Citizen Smith
April 22, 2022 8:03 am

Yesterday, climate change caused my flip flop to blow out.

This morning, climate change caused my toast to burn.

Reply to  Citizen Smith
April 22, 2022 8:35 am

Stepped on a pop top?

Some people claim there’s a woman to blame.

April 22, 2022 8:11 am

No, the internet is the driving cause of loss of languages. Followed closely “entertainment” media.

April 22, 2022 8:26 am

Blaming CC when the elephant in the room is political upheaval….

Last edited 1 year ago by DMacKenzie
Michael in Dublin
April 22, 2022 8:31 am

How many languages are the same as five hundred or a thousand or two thousand years ago? There may be a debate around climate change or how significant it is but there is no debate about languages changing. Our world will not be impoverished by languages changing or disappearing because people will simply revert to other languages and adapt.

jeff corbin
April 22, 2022 8:48 am

All the hot air in the United Kingdom is causing their broadcasters to flee to American media. In so doing, overthrowing our distinct American elitist vernacular and accent by lengthening and shortening vowels randomly in order to create an individualistic brand while homogenizing the English language globally. The globalizing and homogenizing effects of rising seas, horrendous storms, hydrocarbon wars and the endless flow of new existential threats has created an voracious appetite for sports betting and the globalization of American sports. This makes it impossible to find a MLB baseball game on broadcast TV or Radio. What happen to hotdogs, cracker jack, the bottle of cold American Lager and brown bags of roasted salted peanuts. Now we get miracles of fractionalizing food science rendered pseudo-wine, boozey fruity seltzer, plant burgers and crappy sushi all in the name of what? Climate change must end global warming soon so we can get back to the Cronkite keystone for a distinctively American vernacular. Most of all, we must return of middle class American ideal of broadcast baseball and cracker jack by keeping the vowel messing united kingdom elites out of American media…. let them bask in their own hot air.

jeff corbin
Reply to  jeff corbin
April 22, 2022 8:50 am

tongue firmly in cheek.

Richard Page
Reply to  jeff corbin
April 22, 2022 10:41 am

I noticed that you sent some of the ones we were happy to see leave straight back again whilst keeping some of the good ones. Mind you, when James Corden, Cat Deeley, Nigel Lythgoe and Gordon Ramsay all went over to the states, the average IQ of the UK shot up! And, like you, just funnin’.

April 22, 2022 8:50 am

I’m more concerned the Babel fish may go extinct

Andrew Dickens
April 22, 2022 8:56 am

the more languages there are, the more the opportunity for international misunderstanding. Every time I hear that a language has become extinct, I give a little cheer. Ideally, one day the whole world will be talking the same language.

Richard Page
Reply to  Andrew Dickens
April 22, 2022 10:42 am

Yup, trouble is it’s likely to be Chinese.

April 22, 2022 9:04 am

the story of david good is an interesting case study . his mother is a yanomami amazon woman who only tried living inNJ for a few months before she had to return to the jungle . and his father is an anthropologist from new jersey . David was raised a typical NJ kid and did not see or communicate with his mother til he was college age . he now spends considerable time with his yanomami family . very interesting to see how such a primitive tribe is reacting to cell phones and the internet . lots on you tube about it

April 22, 2022 9:17 am

Official “Climate Science ” is more or less the reason to be at loss for words.

The Dark Lord
April 22, 2022 10:14 am

so people are moving from using a useless language (in the modern world) to a useful one … seems like progress to me … of course, it has nothing to do with “climate change” but everything to do with USELESS language …

andy in epsom
April 22, 2022 10:15 am

So the spread of US films and media has no impact and the indoctrination that it brings

April 22, 2022 10:30 am

Won’t it be wonderful when evolution ceases, everything on earth remains static and nothing changes?

Then life will be much better, just like the good old days. Never forget, all the worlds problems are your fault for wanting a better life.

April 22, 2022 10:31 am

…and then you have all those sci–fi films with space alien languages that have to be translated into English for the audiences watching….

April 22, 2022 10:38 am

Looks like other fields of science are getting jealous of all that environmental activist money floating around in the climate scientology department, and working hard to work climate into their “naratives”

Robert of Texas
April 22, 2022 11:22 am

Is there nothing that CO2 driven Climate Change cannot destroy?

I just finished reading a “science article” that Climate Change is causing a higher divorce rate among the Albatross. Not kidding. I was astonished to discover that birds had marriage contracts at all.

Therefore, it is no wonder that Climate Change can cause loss of language skills, or perhaps people to be born mute. I think this was predicted by H.G. Wells and “The Time Machine”.

April 22, 2022 11:22 am

Written by Steph Koyfman… writer, lindy hopper, and astrologer.
Very scientific!

Tom Gasloli
April 22, 2022 12:05 pm

This is really just an excuse for academics who have wasted their lives studying dying languages to get Green New Deal and “climate mitigation” funding.

Andy Pattullo
April 22, 2022 12:21 pm

I don’t need to waste time reading it to know it is crap. Languages have died and will die. They are impermanent just like all life and species and climate. They all change, things disappear and new things arise. It isn’t a disaster and the idea that climate is the main driver of cultures and languages is an unscientific superstitious and convenient belief used to promote the same tired old end-of-times-due-to-human success trope.

Ed Zuiderwijk
April 22, 2022 12:58 pm

Climate Change! Is there anything it can’t do?

April 22, 2022 3:07 pm

Climate change alarmists have corrupted languages in general. Most normal humans seem to be aware that the term “climate change” itself has been corrupted, judging by the MyWorld2015 survey of about 940 million people, which placed the issue of climate last out of 16 issues.
I used to have a job description that included requirements such as promoting sustainability, energy efficiency, resilience, and promotion of climate-responsive design in the context of both urban and natural environments. All of the above terms are now unusable.

April 22, 2022 4:21 pm

What a silly idea. Not only is there no more climate change now than normal, but there’s no evidence it has any effect on diversity of languages.

Not Chicken Little
April 22, 2022 4:22 pm

Is there ANYTHING the Magic Molecule CO2 can’t do?

Nope. Except anything good, I guess…

Edward Katz
April 22, 2022 6:16 pm

So I guess Latin became a dead language because of climate change; i.e. the Little Ice Age, or was it because of a lack of use. The latter was the real reason, and it still applies. Languages die because better ones or more popular ones supplant them, or they are too inflexible to add new words to the vocabulary.

April 22, 2022 7:29 pm

Horrors, now I’m really worried!


Neither I, nor my wife, nor our kids and grandkids speak the language of our ancestors. OH MY GOD, WHAT A NIGHTMARE EXISTENCE!!!

Matthew Sykes
April 23, 2022 6:58 am

Rising sea levels cut off the land, isolate it, it will cause more languages to evolve.

See how easy it is to BS with logic?

April 23, 2022 5:48 pm

So Babel was a good thing for humanity?

Jim Gorman
April 25, 2022 7:04 am

The first thing that hit me was the claim of sea level change causing the loss of language by dispersion due to flooding. Now I realize there are probably some islands or atolls that have a unique native language but in today’s world they would be few and far between.

Most people on the coasts of bodies of water will have already been discovered sometime in the past. They will have been exposed to different languages and if commerce erupted I will guarantee that they learned new languages.

Probably more important is population density in the world. You can’t go from a few million people to 8 – 9 billion people without massive expansion of cultural interaction. When this happens, the larger culture will subsum the smaller one. It is a fact. The dispersion of people into the larger culture is not because of climate change, it just happens because of opportunities.

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