Does it matter what you call people fleeing their homes due to climate change?

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Environmental migrant or climate refugee - why are definitions so important?

By 2050, an estimated 143 million people will be forced to flee their homes due to climate change. Whether they should be called climate refugees or environmental migrants is widely discussed, which means that many people on the run fall between the cracks with life-changing consequences.

In the EU election this year, a green sweptnvåg ösee Europe, in response to it vgrowing interest in a climate-prioritizing policy. A climate policy that includes future climate refugees or environmental migrants will be highly topical, not just for the EU but globally.

Climate change will contribute to the need for people to flee their homes, which has already begun. The world we live in now has already increased 1 degree in average temperature, which has resulted in drought, glaciersnder, floods and natural disasters around the world. We can already see how drought is affecting human survival in Africa, as 2 million people in Somalia alone are at risk of losing their lives due to famine.

What then happens nis värmen på which increases by 1,5-2 degrees on average, is that the changes will go towards the more extreme - with longer woesrmeboils, more extensive droughts, water shortages and floods.

According to a rapport published by The Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC), på has 17.2 million mäpeople have been forced to move onådue to natural disasters, that only in 2018. The graph below shows the connection between natural, so-called geophysical causes and natural disasters.

More migrants create new issues
Nisthe number of refugees of a certain type is increasing, coming frågor omhow we should legally treat these people who are forced to flee their homes.

About a person flying on due to climate changerachanges should be called climate refugee or environmental migrant are frequently discussed. A fugitive is a person fleeing due to a värooted fear of, for example, forrföljelse påbecause of ethnicity or religion. A migrant is a person who väljer to move ifrån sitt land, fis a job or bättre mopportunities. What separates them åt rättsligt är that states have an obligation to provide protection for a refugee but have rätten to deny a migrant.

Considering to climate changerathe changes är and långsam process and that it is considered non-discriminatory, that it does not sätter one person in front of another, på migrants who escape natural disasters end up between the seats. När it happens a jordbävning usually människor som påaffected by the natural disaster ftransferred to accäand usually within their own country. The långsamma process innebäis that the disaster relocation may be temporaryällig, men also permanently. Fthe transfer can äalso take place within the country, but alsoå be Artänsexceeding.

In the global frameworks that exist på neither the Refugee nor the Migration Convention has a definition as stämmer in pto a person flying the climate. Researcher Adam Reuben, who is coauthor of the report Climate Refugees frthan the think tank Fores, means that precisely because there is no någon definition så stays frågan where. The debate about the concept continues and the world fails to focus on what is most important - to help people who are fleeing.

- The discussion revolves around the långsamma klimatförathe change and about it is millön som äis the only cause of migration, or about it are additional factors, he says.

He then sees fparts of usingend of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) definition. He means onthat it says that migration can be voluntary, but alsoåimperative. That the transfer can take place på due to natural causes, but alsoto on due to mähuman environmental disasters, such as a knuclear reactor as gårsönder.

- The täreally covers the whole spectrum, because it also speakså about internal and gränsexcess, as well as short and långvarig migration. Then is it a bit svårt att sägave generally to climate-driven migration is voluntary, äeven if it may be compelling as welloh, conthe eats.

In the UN Global Framework, is the framework for refugees thin ijcontöwith the one who gäller ffor migration. In it there is more to goto på, as provisions on migration give states the opportunity to självbestämmande. Another difference is that each country treats migrants according to its own immigration laws, instead of complying with international law that applies to refugees. This means that you are treated differently depending on which country you immigrate to.

- Nothing äis binding on the states, but it is a matter of freedom of choice. And one reason why you do not want to count the group fleeing natural disasters as refugees, äis that states do not want the obligation to receive them.

This means that those who are forced to migrate due to climate change have no law to lean on if they want to seek protection. This can lead to them being in an even more vulnerable situation in the recipient countries, as they have to rely on the countries wanting to offer them help.

Asia is hard hit
The områthe one who has already been affected hårdare än others are large parts of Asia. Bangladesh has already had major problems with floods and the problem does not seem to stop där. Large parts of the country forrväNTAS sink below sea level. If you look at the noisersta neighboring country, India, they have not - despite signing the Refugee Convention - committed to abide by it.

This can påserve the citizens of Bangladesh när it will seek protection if they are forced to flee när water levelånhöjsThe means that there is an uncertainty about that gain protection nis mäPeople in Bangladesh are forced to move from their homes.

Det berä143 million climate refugees by 2050. The large number of climate migrants can sänkas to a number between 31 and 72 million about åtgärder fto prevent climate changerathe changes sätts in sto fast as meye-catching.

Then the kan röra sig om en stor mängd mäpeople who are forced to move, pto barrows frågan about climate refugees to come pto speak för international bestämmelser. Adam Reuben believes that the EU is one of those måste bestämma sig for how to act nis människor begins formove.

There will be no large-scale climate migrants coming to the Union tomorrow, but it will happen in a fairly lång time. It will not be like the situation in 2015 when there was a big stormngd människor på same gång, but much will have to be handled with a common asylum system, he says.

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