Sea-Level Rise and the Marshallese Diaspora

8 Pages Posted: 19 Dec 2018

See all articles by Seiji Yamada

Seiji Yamada

University of Hawaii - Department of Family Medicine and Community Health

Maxine Burkett

University of Hawaii - William S. Richardson School of Law

Gregory G. Maskarinec

University of Hawaii - Department of Family Medicine and Community Health; University of Hawaii - Department of Native Hawaiian Health

Date Written: March 2017

Abstract

People who have little responsibility for industrial capitalism must pay the price for global warming. The Marshall Islands of the Central Pacific Ocean are among the most vulnerable locations threatened by sea level rise and may cease to be habitable within this generation. Under its Compact of Free Association (COFA) with the U.S., citizens of the Republic of the Marshall Islands travel freely to the U.S. without needing a visa. As the conditions for survival become more difficult in the Marshall Islands, the COFA provision of free entry into the U.S. makes migration to the U.S. the logical option for the Marshallese people. The highest population of Marshallese migrants are now found in Northwest Arkansas, attracted by employment in the poultry industry, where, to survive, they find themselves contributing to the forces of global warming that make their island homes uninhabitable.

Suggested Citation

Yamada, Seiji and Burkett, Maxine and Maskarinec, Gregory G., Sea-Level Rise and the Marshallese Diaspora (March 2017). Environmental Justice, March 2017; University of Hawai’i Richardson School of Law Research Paper No. 3293241. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3293241

Seiji Yamada

University of Hawaii - Department of Family Medicine and Community Health ( email )

United States

Maxine Burkett (Contact Author)

University of Hawaii - William S. Richardson School of Law ( email )

2515 Dole Street
Honolulu, HI 96822-2350
United States

Gregory G. Maskarinec

University of Hawaii - Department of Family Medicine and Community Health ( email )

United States

University of Hawaii - Department of Native Hawaiian Health ( email )

United States

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