Tuesday, October 26, 2021

White House Report on the Impact of Climate Change on Migration

The White House recently released a Report on the Impact of Climate Change on Migration. Here are some choice excerpts from the introduction:

From those forced to move to those left behind, U.S. policy can aid in supporting human security by, among other things, building on existing foreign assistance to a reconsideration and development of legal mechanisms to support those who migrate....

The use of U.S. foreign assistance is one lever to respond to climate change related migration....

It is also critical to support people who desire to stay as long and as safely as possible in their home areas through investments in disaster risk reduction (DRR) measures and local adaptation, including capacity building to assist countries with managing environmental risks and land use....

Existing legal instruments to protect displaced individuals are limited in scope and do not readily lend themselves to protect those individuals displaced by the impacts of climate change, especially those that address migration across borders. Given the growing trend in displacement related to climate change, expanding access to protection will be vital. The United States will need to strengthen the application of existing protection frameworks, adjust U.S. protection mechanisms to better accommodate people fleeing the impacts of climate change, and evaluate the need for additional legal protections for those who have no alternative but to migrate....

Most notably, this report recommends the establishment of a standing interagency policy process on Climate Change and Migration to coordinate U.S. Government efforts to mitigate and respond to migration resulting from the impacts of climate change that brings together representatives across the scientific, development, humanitarian, and peace and security elements of the U.S. Government.

Most of the report's recommendations are in the "analytics" vein, that is to say, "let's collect data and think more about this topic."



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