Environmental Refugees: Truth or Myth?
Andrada Mihai | BIG Research Reports | #30
‘Environmental refugees’ is a term used by academics, journalists and activists to refer to those individuals who were forced to relocate or migrate due to the damage that the environment has caused on their livelihoods. However, there are important international actors, such as the UNHCR, that disagree with the use of the term environmental refugee insofar as going to initially deny their existence. If a prominent organization such as the UNHCR has refused to accept this term, is it because it is justified in believing that such a phenomenon doesn’t exist? How do other international actors, such as the EU, a global leader in promoting environmental protection react to this issue? This paper will analyze the issue of environmental degradation and how it drives migration, as well as how it plays into the context of security, a very important issue in today’s global political field. Finally, it will explore the global response to environmentally displaced individuals, especially the response of International Organizations and States.