François Gemenne speaks at the UN Global Compact for Migration
On 23 May 2017 Hugo Observatory director François Gemenne spoke at the second thematic session of the UN Global Compact for safe, orderly and regular migration. This new UN process, launched in the wake of the UN Summit on Refugees and Migrants in September 2016, aims to promote the global governance of international migration and is expected to be concluded in 2018 with the adoption of a Global Compact by the UN General Assembly.
During panel 3 of this consultative session the adverse effects of climate change and natural disasters as drivers of migration were addressed.
Mr. Gemenne stressed the importance of the Global Compact for the governance of environmentally induced migration, which is already a pressing reality and will become even more so in the future. While environmental migration takes many forms, it is never the sole factor influencing people’s migration decisions and is intertwined with economic and political drivers of migration. In parallel to the increasing attention for those displaced by environmental factors, the needs of people unable to move in the face of environmental change should be adressed as well. To arrive at a realistic picture of the impacts of environmental factors on migration, researchers will have to study the perceptions people have of environmental change, which can be very different from the empirical reality. Mr. Gemenne concluded his talk pointing to the adaptation potential of migration in the face of a changing climate