Countries vulnerable to extreme weather and rising seas should follow the example of small Pacific island states like Kiribati, and work out how to relocate threatened communities if there is no alternative, experts said at U.N. climate talks in Lima.
When increasingly erratic weather ruined his crops of maize, wheat and barley in highland Maksegni, the middle-aged farmer migrated to Metemma, in northwest Ethiopia, to look for work in the lowland area’s commercial sesame and cotton plantations.
Under international law, someone who flees their country because of conflict or persecution is a refugee, but someone who flees because of inability to meet their basic household needs is not.
Firmly attached to her home region and long used to the harshness of her living conditions, Amina Aliyu would probably not see herself as a potential “climate change refugee”.
It is no longer a question of addressing if climate change is affecting the world we are living in, but it is focusing on, what is going on, and how we are to alleviate the unfolding impacts around us.