A new United Nations report is highlighting the potential negative impacts of climate change on some of the world's poorest populations.
The UN's independent expert on extreme poverty and human rights analyzed research focused on climate change and worsening inequality. Philip Alston says the world risks a "climate apartheid" scenario if more immediate action isn't taken.
According to the report's estimate, climate change could force more than 120 million more people into poverty by 2030 as it affects access to basic human needs like food, housing and water.
Alston says the world's most vulnerable populations will have to "choose between starvation and migration" as extreme weather events become more commonplace. But wealthier groups will have the means to protect themselves and adapt.
It's not the first analysis to point out the wealth disparity challenges of environmental changes. Previous research has indicated similar consequences, warning of a deepening wealth divide in poor nations and predicting that lower-income communities in the U.S. will suffer the most economically from climate change.
The report's author notes that steps to combat climate change by UN member states have fallen short.
Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN.