Human Mobility in the Context of Climate Change: recommendations for COP21 in Paris

Recommendations from the Advisory Group on Climate Change and Human Mobility (November 2015)

WHAT IS THE ADVISORY GROUP ON CLIMATE CHANGE AND HUMAN MOBILITY?

The Advisory Group on Climate Change and Human Mobility (Advisory Group) is composed of the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Norwegian Refugee Council and its Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC), Refugees International (RI), the Center for International Relations Studies de Sciences Po (Sciences Po-CERI), and the Arab Network for Environment and Development (RAED).

The work of the Advisory Group is anchored in decisions of UNFCCC Parties to enhance understanding and action in the area of climate change induced displacement, migration and planned relocation (Paragraph 14(f) of the Cancun Decision 1/CP.16 and Doha decision 3/CP.18 paragraph 7 (a) (vi)). “Human mobility” is an umbrella term that encompasses displacement of populations, migration and planned relocation.

The goal of the Advisory Group is to provide technical support to UNFCCC Parties on human mobility in the context of climate change, and to ensure that aspects of human mobility – including migration, displacement and planned relocation and other forms of mobility – that are addressed under the UNFCCC are coherent and based on the most recent evidence, findings and experience (research, best practices, data, etc.)

This document answers questions about migration, displacement, and planned relocation in the context of climate change, and suggests recommendations for COP21 in Paris.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR THE PARIS AGREEMENT TO ADDRESS HUMAN MOBILITY?

The Paris Agreement and decisions represent a unique opportunity for Parties to the UNFCCC to prevent and reduce climate change-related displacement by encouraging and supporting the planning and implementation of mitigation and adaptation strategies. This includes measures that: strengthen the resilience of climate vulnerable populations to enable them to remain where they live; support or facilitate voluntary and dignified internal and cross-border migration as an adaptation strategy; and, as an option of last resort, plan for participatory and dignified relocation.