All the Empty Bits of Europe where Millions of Refugees can Go

Rather confused today

Donald Tusk

EUROPE is “close to the limit” on accepting a new wave of refugees, according to EU bigwig Donald Tusk.

Speaking ahead of his visit to the G20 in China, the European Council President said: “The practical capabilities of Europe to host new waves of refugees, not to mention irregular economic migrants, are close to the limits

Wheras a German Minister in a speech in India says

‘We need more immigrants we welcome them we have room in Germany

Ok whats the evidence over what bits of Europe are full and which are empty?

Luckily the OECD publishes an index of rurality measuring how much of an area’s p[opulation is not living in urban areas.

In the past this was difficult to apply across Europe because of differing sizes of statistical areas.  Those fine fellows at Eurostate have applied a straightforward GIS technique to remap it based on a consistent raster grid.  Heres the result.

The green areas being the rural ones.  The results are striking, there are areas about 6 or 7 times larger than England as empty as the borders of Scotland.  How can Tusk reasonably claim Europe is full.  Also notably Hungary and England have no or few very rural Green areas perhaps explaining a little of their politics.

Given that there is a close correlation between urban expansion, economies of scale and economic growth if aging Europe is to match emerging economies growth rates it need to find areas for rapid large scale urbanisation as the national strategies of India and China do.

Certainly the green areas contain many mountainous and/or arid areas – though for right or wring this never held back China.  But it also contains many wet lush and flats areas, especially in Poland and the former East Germany.

Adjusting for post-war border changes both countries have lost around 10 million population each which have only been made up in the last few years, and both countries have static and declining populations.

But what about infrastructure etc.  If you had followed this argument Europe would still be in the Dark Ages.  Why because it is urbanisation which creates the innovation and economic growth that pays for the infrastructure.  The harmful effects of immigration only occurs when nations restrict immigrants access to land and the extent of new urbanisation.

The level of refugees reaching Europes shores by boat in 2015 is around 1/10 th of those that reached the US by boat in its peak immigration years before WWII.  The issue isnt the number of immigrants’, perfectly manageable, but the quality of the boats.

 

 

 

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