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20 Oct 2015

Slowly but surely: The environment, climate change and migration in ACP countries

In the history of mankind, people have always migrated to cope with environmental changes. Now more than ever, the environment, the detrimental effects of climate change, and their links to migration are brought to public attention. This is of particular relevance for the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States. The link between migration and the environment is twofold: migration can be induced by environmental change while at the same time migration flows can impact on the environment. Environmental change, in most cases, does not directly displace people. Instead, it interacts with economic, socio-cultural and political push- and pull-factors and increases an already high vulnerability stemming from economic weakness and a high dependence on the environment (Black et al.,2011; Kniveton et al., 2009; Laczko and Aghazarm, 2009).

This background note aims to shed light on the concepts, observation and data challenges in relation to migration and environment in ACP countries, outline available prominent facts and figures in ACP countries, highlight the effects of the migration - environment nexus on human development and provide recommendations for policymakers in ACP countries.