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Environmental change and (Im) mobility in the South

Weber, Eberhard (2014) Environmental change and (Im) mobility in the South. In: A New Perspective on Human Mobility in the South. Global Migration Issues, 3 . Springer, Dordrecht, pp. 119-148. ISBN 9789401790222

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In the past 3 decades, environmental and climate change have been perceived by many as severe threats to developing countries that also destabilize development efforts. Among many other challenges, settlement in coastal areas is exposed particularly to the impacts of a changing global climate. Many fear that states like Kiribati, the Maldives, Marshall Islands and Tuvalu might first become inhabitable and then disappear for good. The chapter looks into the relationship between environmental change and migration. It takes up major viewpoints and arguments and looks into potential environmental reasons that make people move. To get a better understanding of migration processes, the relationships between environmental change, livelihood security and migration are discussed. The chapter concentrates on challenges in the Pacific Islands region, where coping with, adapting to and recovering from environmental change and natural hazards are closely linked to people’s strategies to avert risk and create human security. Human insecurity, risk, and social, economic and environmental stress can better be managed when people diversify their sources of livelihood. Migration is embedded in such strategies. Societies of the Pacific Islands have a long and rich history of migration; a history, however, that never saw people of this part of the world as refugees. They always have been migrants that contributed to the destination countries they moved to. The idea of becoming environmental or climate change refugees is rather unwelcoming to the people of the Pacific Islands. They perceive that refugees and asylum-seekers in their direct neighborhoods are treated like people without strong rights. To help Pacific Islanders to prepare for a potentially more risky future means to help them acquire the skills that make them welcome citizens of future destination countries.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Additional Information: DOI: 10.1007/978-94-017-9023-9_6
Uncontrolled Keywords: Pacific Islands, environmental change, migration
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
J Political Science > JX International law
K Law > KZ Law of Nations
Q Science > Q Science (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment (FSTE) > School of Geography, Earth Science and Environment
Depositing User: Eberhard Weber
Date Deposited: 09 Sep 2014 00:57
Last Modified: 27 May 2016 02:27

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