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Policy Briefs on Climate Change and Conflict

Climate Change and Conflict

Social Implications of Climate Change in Vanuatu: Potential for Conflict, Avenues for Conflict Prevention, and Peace Building

Policy Brief  No 35 - March, 2019

The ‘perfect storm’ is brewing as Vanuatu’s population grows and its exposure to climate risks escalates as the planet continues to warm. It is widely accepted that the consequences of climate change are disproportionately burdening vulnerable, developing states, such as those across the South Pacific region.

Climate Change and Conflict

Climate Change-Induced Relocation: Problems and Achievements—the Carterets Case

Policy Brief  No 33 - February, 2019

In Pacific Island Countries, the planned relocation of island communities affected by climate change is increasingly being discussed as an adaptation measure of last resort. While some planning is proceeding, there is as yet little actual resettlement activity. However, this is set to change in the not-too-distant future. This Policy Brief presents one prominent case of resettlement – relocation from the Carterets atoll, part of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, to the main island of Bougainville.

Climate Change and Conflict

Climate Change and Migration Crises in Oceania

Policy Brief  No 29 - November, 2018

“Climate-induced migration” is often perceived as potentially leading to political instability and violence, and thus, as critical. Oceania is considered a prime example for this assumed linear causality, since sea level rise and other effects of anthropogenic climate change are threatening to displace large numbers of people in the region. The policy brief scrutinises this perception by critically engaging with the securitization of climate-induced migration in the Pacific region, with a particular interest in who defines what a crisis is, when and where. Its central claim is that without contextualised knowledge of the relevant power structures which determine a) who defines what can be considered a (migration) crisis, b) how human mobility challenges pre-established ideas of citizenship, belonging and national identity, and c) how climate change figures in these topical fields and political processes, we cannot fully understand the potential effects of climate-induced migration.

Climate Change and Conflict

Climate Change and Conflict in the Pacific: Prevention, Management and the Enhancement of Community Resilience

Policy Brief  No 27 - November, 2018

The Toda Peace Institute and the National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies (University of Otago, New Zealand) organised an international workshop, “Climate Change and Conflict in the Pacific: Prevention, Management and the Enhancement of Community Resilience” in Auckland, New Zealand, from 28 to 30 September 2018. The workshop brought together international experts on climate change, security policymakers and local peacebuilding practitioners and civil society actors in the Pacific. The workshop was attended by 34 men and women from Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Island Countries. During a three-day conversation they addressed the local and international challenges and potential conflict linkages posed by climatic uncertainty in Oceania. The key goal of the workshop was to set a framework for research that informs policy, promotes both vertical and horizontal dialogue between researchers, governments and social agencies and people in the region, and produces real-world initiatives to address one of the region’s most pressing issues—climate change.

Climate Change and Conflict

Climate Change in Pacific Island Countries: A Review

Policy Brief  No 20 - September, 2018

This review investigates the climate change problem at a global level, specifically temperature limits and how much carbon we can burn globally to avoid reaching a point at which global temperature increase cannot be stopped by further human action due to ecological feed-back effects (such as polar ice melting and permafrost areas releasing methane). The Pacific Region is discussed in the global context, particularly the Pacific involvement in setting temperature limits and the specific vulnerabilities of the island nations. A review is given of the Pacific Island Countries Second National Communications (SNCs) and the Initial Nationally Determined Contribution or INDCs submitted to the Paris Agreement. It is concluded that the position of the Pacific nations is becoming more fragile every year with serious problems ahead.