Human Displacement and Climate Change in the Asia-Pacific
Stefan Gruber, ‘Human Displacement and Climate Change in the Asia-Pacific’ in: Ben Boer (ed) Environmental Law Dimensions of Human Rights (Oxford University Press, 2015) 181-200
31 Pages Posted: 28 Feb 2015 Last revised: 18 May 2018
Date Written: January 12, 2015
The chapter discusses the urgent need to develop comprehensive legal responses to the displacement of people caused by the effects of climate change. Although vast numbers are expected to be displaced around the world, any international legal instrument does not specifically recognize their situation. The chapter emphasizes the devastating effects of such events on the human rights of those affected and stresses the need for international legal recognition of displaced people. The case studies discuss the effects of climate change on island communities, river deltas, and accelerated desertification and other soil degradation in the Asia-Pacific. Finding solutions, agreeing on binding legal instruments to grant protection, and sharing relevant responsibilities is crucial. The significant challenges of such an endeavour must not be underestimated, due to widely differing political interests within the international community as well as the complexity of the problems and their causes.
Keywords: migration; sea level rise; human rights; forced displacement; climate change; land degradation; Asia–Pacific; environmental refugees; legal solutions
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