Climate Migration and Climate Migrants: What Threat, Whose Security?

Climate Change and Displacement: Multidisciplinary Perspectives

Author/s (editor/s):

Lorraine Elliott

Publication year:


Publication type:

Book chapter

Find this publication at:
Hart Publishing

Published in Jane McAdam, ed., Climate Change and Displacement: Multidisciplinary Perspectives, Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2010, pp. 175-90.

This chapter explores the ways in which climate change and climate migration have been secutitised, first in the general (global) context, and then in the Pacific more specifically. The chapter begins with an overview and critique of claims in the security literature about the challenges to international security that can or might arise from climate change and climate-induced migration. Frequently missing from this literature is a concern with human security, which was intended to offer an antidote to models of security that focused on challenges and conflicts between states. The second part of the chapter investigates the securitisation of, and the security challenges that arise from, climate change in the Pacific and the role of migration in those debates. In the Pacific context, the apparent incommensurability of securitisation as a statist practice and human security as a critical non-statist practice starts to break down. It is difficult to separate the security or vulnerability of people from existential threats to states. Yet, it is the human security emphasis on adaptation and social resilience that provide security strategies that can address both.

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