Policy Briefs Books Journals

Policy Briefs on Climate Change and Conflict

Climate Change and Conflict

The United Nations Security Council, the Boe Declaration, and Upolu Luma Vaai’s Umbilical Cord – and Why They Matter for Peacebuilding in the Era of Man-Made Climate Change

Policy Brief  No.76 - May, 2020

This Policy Brief tries to do the seemingly impossible: to lay open the relations between spheres of experiences and activities that at first sight are worlds apart, such as debates in the UN Security Council and stories told in a village on a small Pacific island, decisions taken (or not taken) by so-called world leaders in New York and by local village elders; and it tries to explain why revealing these relations matters for peacebuilding and policy advice in our current era of climate change. The paper commences with a comparison between the two existential threats mankind is confronted with today: nuclear threat and the threat of climate change, and builds a case for peace research to engage with climate change. Flowing from the identification of gaps and shortcomings in the debate, an innovative Pacific eco-relational approach is presented.

Climate Change and Conflict

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

Summary Report  No.74 - May, 2020

In September 2019, Toda Peace Institute held a workshop which facilitated dialogue between three groups of Climate Change experts. The aim was to generate shared analysis of challenges and, wherever possible, joint or coordinated practical responses. The meeting was structured to have a ‘triangular’ format. First, contributors working in the international realm presented their analyses to scholars and practitioners from Pacific Island countries and Japan. Second, Pacific Islanders presented their local and regional research findings, and their practice-based approaches, to the international and Japanese experts. In a third step, Japanese presenters outlined the state of the debate in Japan for the benefit of the Pacific Islanders and international experts. This policy brief draws together the main challenges and perspectives that emerged from that meeting, with illustrative case studies and recommended approaches for linking academic research, policy and practice.

Climate Change and Conflict

Environmental Peacebuilding and Climate Change: Peace and Conflict Studies at the Edge of Transformation

Policy Brief  No.68 - December, 2019

This Policy Brief presents a comprehensive review of the literature on environmental conflict and peacebuilding. It traces the development of the field from its beginnings in the 1980s until today, identifying several distinct stages which are characterised by specific research questions, approaches and findings. Based on this literature review the authors address major gaps and shortcomings as well as problematic implications of the research so far. A critical approach is developed which can inform Environmental Peace and Conflict Studies in the future, taking up incentives from the field of Anthropocene Studies and the concepts of ‘sustaining peace’ and ‘sustainable peace.’ The Policy Brief concludes with some recommendations that can give direction for a new wave of research which is currently emerging.

Climate Change and Conflict

The Climate-Conflict-Food Security Nexus: Pacific Marine Ecosystems

Policy Brief  No.58 - November, 2019

Growing scientific evidence indicates that global impacts and flow on effects of climate change are threatening ecosystems and food security. Developing countries, especially coastal communities across the Pacific, are at risk of climate-related food insecurity. This is particularly the case in the context of unprecedented threats posed to the health of marine ecosystems and their capacity to provide protein, income and spiritual connections for Pacific communities. This policy brief advocates for adaptive co-management approaches that integrate traditional and Western knowledge, law, governance, science and technology in a bid to protect nature. Framed by national and global legal and governance systems, it highlights the importance of approaches which empower local communities. The policy brief concludes with five recommendations which focus on the importance of working with local communities, as the ‘front line’ guardians of nature.

Climate Change and Conflict

“We Are Therefore We Live”: Pacific Eco-Relational Spirituality and Changing the Climate Change Story

Policy Brief  No.56 - October, 2019

While there is overwhelming physical evidence and warning about climate change and conflict, it seems we have succumbed to the shadows of a one-sided story, a story that focuses entirely on the secular physical dimension with the spiritual lost beneath a one-dimensional umbra. Spirituality is critical to a new path for a new climate story.