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05 June 2017

Under a Changing Sky
Bangladesh is extremely at risk of the negative effects of climate change. Millions of people have already been displaced due to climatic effects and numbers keep raising.

Different parts of the country are affected differently: the north is more prone to river bank erosion, erratic rainfall and drought, while the south is affected by cyclones, storm surges and salinity intrusion - movement of saline water into freshwater aquifers, which can lead to contamination of drinking water sources and other consequences. Flooding affects almost the whole country, which increases river bank erosion.

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Joki and Bevelyn and their parents are the sole family living on the tiny island of Huene in Papua New Guinea. The island has been slowly shrinking over the years. It is likely that they will be the last generation to live on this island. Photo: IOM / Muse Mohammed 2016

Across Land and Ocean

On the occasion of World Environment Day 2017, Laura Thompson, the Deputy Director General of the UN Migration Agency (IOM) joins Monique Barbut, Under Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and Françoise Gaill, renowned oceanographer and Coordinator of the scientific board of the Ocean & Climate Platform (OCP) in a three branched reflection on how people and nature connect through the lenses of the land, oceans and migration. 

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Care and Act as Soon as You Can
Engaging with children on environmental migration

By Dina Ionesco, Head of IOM’s Migration, Environment and Climate Change Division

Our work at the UN Migration Agency (IOM) targets migrants and their communities, through an engagement with public representatives from the national, international, regional or local level. We often work in partnership with researchers, academics, media or non-governmental organizations. In our daily work on migration, environment and climate change our usual interlocutors are adults. We do have a tendency to be carried away in specialized language, drifting away from simple words.

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Environment and Climate Change in the GCM

The Global Compact on Migration (GCM) represents a strategic and significant opportunity for the international community to progress in terms of overall international migration governance and management through inter-governmental dialogue, identification of existing migration policy good practices and state commitments on migration. The GCM offers an opportunity to anchor the environmental and climatic dimensions in the international migration governance agenda. It offers a space to fully acknowledge the importance of climatic and environmental drivers, the multi-causality of migration and the impacts of migration on the environment.

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Migration in the News

  • United Nations and Just Earth News reported that UN agencies are calling for urgent aid to help hundreds of thousands of people affected by Cyclone Mora, which swept across the Bay of Bengal earlier this week. 

  • AFP reported that torrential rains and wind destroyed 1,000 makeshift homes in northeast Nigeria over the weekend, aggravating conditions for the thousands of people displaced by Boko Haram violence.

  • AP reported that the disabled and older people find themselves at much greater risk of starvation or abuse, according to Human Rights Watch. It spoke with Nyang Maria, a South Sudanese woman who’s unable to use her legs. 

  • AFP reported that Spanish coast guards rescued more than 170 migrants crossing the Mediterranean to Europe from northern Africa in four separate boats.

  • The Guardian reported that far-right activists are planning a sea campaign this summer to disrupt vessels saving refugees in the Mediterranean, after successfully intercepting a rescue mission last month.

  • Nigeria’s The Guardian reported that although no fewer than 1, 594 irregular migrants from Nigeria have so far returned from Libya from January through May this year, many more are still stranded outside the country.

  • Indo Asian News Service reported that Greek police on Friday started the evacuation of an improvised refugee and migrant camp located in an old airport here. IOM arranged a nine-bus convoy to carry out the evacuation.

Trending on the Internet

  • News Deeply published an Op-Ed which argues that economists’ warnings that migration will undermine European welfare states are based on the same mistaken assumptions common to the anti-immigrant movements roiling the continent.

  • A CEPS publication explores ways in which responsibility for refugees can be fairly distributed, globally and within the EU and how irregular migration can be curbed while expanding legal immigration to the benefit of all concerned.


Media Contacts
For interviews and other media requests, please contact the IOM Media and Communications team here.