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Environmental Migration

Persons leave their homes within their country of origin or across borders for different reasons – often the environment constitutes one of the factors – together with economic, political or social factors – leading to migration (e.g. droughts, desertification, floods, sea level rise). Increasingly, climate change is responsible for such environmental changes. In several cases of environment-related migration, a clear-cut distinction between voluntary and involuntary migration is difficult – particularly in cases of droughts where persons can fulfil their daily needs only under difficult circumstances and therefore decide to leave their homes. This raises questions regarding their legal status, in particular the question whether they are eligible for international protection.

In the past we conducted research on the legal status of persons displaced inter alia by environmental factors under international and EU law. The project ClimMig: Climate-induced migration and the need for new normative and institutional frameworks focused on the question to what extent legal and institutional frameworks at global, European and Austrian level regulate or take climate-related migration sufficiently into account. In this context not only forced migration but also the role of voluntary migration as adaption measure was investigated.

A recent project ClimAccount: Human Rights Accountability of the EU and Austria for Climate Policies in Third Countries and their possible Effects on Migration aims at shedding light on the complex relationship between climate policies, migration and human rights by focussing on the effects of EU’s and Austria’s climate policies for the enjoyment of human rights of persons in third countries and their possible repercussions for displacement, resettlement and/or relocation. In this context (extraterritorial) human rights obligations of the EU and Austria will be identified.

Presentation of the BEIGEWUM Kurswechsel Heft 3/2016: Klimapolitik und Systemwandel

Zeitschrift Kurswechsel [Logo]

The following authors will be discussing the new issue of Kurswechsel: Monika Mayrhofer (Ludwig Boltzmann Institute), Nora Räthzel (University of Umea) and Christoph Streissler (AK Wien)

The discussion will be chaired by Michael Soder (WU Wien) and Florian Wukovitsch (AK Wien)

The event will be in German.

Details
Location: 
Republikanischer Club, Rockhgasse 1, 1010 Wien

Climaccount Policy Brief

Cover ClimAccount Policy Brief

The research project "ClimAccount Human Rights Accountability of the EU and Austria for Climate Policies in Third Countries and their Possible Effects on Migration" has published a policy brief summarising the most important findings of the project and presenting recommendations to policy makers in order to ensure human rights when implementing climate action.

Cinema and Human Rights: The Grapes of Wrath

GRAPES OF WRATH tells the story of the Joads, a family of farmers from Oklahoma, who lose their farm during the Great Depression and a severe drought in the 1930s. With little work potential on the horizon of the Oklahoma dust bowls, the entire family packs up and heads for the promised land - California. But the arduous trip and harsh living conditions they encounter offer little hope, and family unity proves as daunting a challenge as any other they face. The movie is based on a novel by John Steinbeck.

The event will take place in English!

Location: 
TOPKINO, Rahlgasse 1, 1060 Wien

ClimMig Conference

The conference on "Human Rights, Environmental Change, Migration and Displacement" is organised by the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights in cooperation with the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI), Paris.
It takes place in the context of the ClimMig project, a research project funded by the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund. For details regarding the conference programme and the project visit: www.humanrights.at/climmig.

Registration is possible until 14 September.

Location: 
Sensengasse 3, 1090 Vienna (rooms of the Austrian Research Foundation for International Development (ÖFSE)).

ClimMig: Climate-induced migration and the need for new normative and institutional frameworks

The impacts of climate change will lead to migration, the extent of which is dependent on mitigation and adaptation measures. It is assumed that the majority of persons affected will stay within the region, i.e. mainly within the developing world, and that only few persons will have sufficient resources to arrive in countries outside their region.

Article on Climate-induced Internal Displacement: Does Europe have an obligation to help?

Climate-induced environmental degradation impairs major human rights and can, in the case of inadequate preventive measures, lead to involuntary migration. It is assumed that the majority of persons affected will stay within the boundaries of their home states ( i.e. mainly in developing countries). While other, typically developed states, have caused the majority of historic greenhouse gas emissions, it is primarily the home state that is responsible for the protection of internally displaced persons.

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