Research Handbook on Climate Change, Migration and the Law
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Research Handbook on Climate Change, Migration and the Law

Edited by Benoît Mayer and François Crépeau

This comprehensive Research Handbook provides an overview of the debates on how the law does, and could, relate to migration exacerbated by climate change. It contains conceptual chapters on the relationship between climate change, migration and the law, as well as doctrinal and prospective discussions regarding legal developments in different domestic contexts and in international governance.
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Chapter 10: Displacement due to responses to climate change: the role of a rights-based approach

Sébastien Jodoin, Kathryn Hansen and Caylee Hong

Abstract

This chapter analyses responses to climate change and their impacts on the human rights of displaced populations. As such, this chapter will chiefly examine issues of internal displacement and forced evictions, to be distinguished from the larger concern of climate-induced migration and debates about a possible concept of climate ‘refugees’. Section 2 reviews the risks of displacement associated with three diverse types of responses to climate change: first, displacement due to the Site C Clean Energy Project, a dam and hydroelectric generating station in northern British Columbia (BC), Canada; second, forced evictions in the Cherangani Hills, Kenya resulting from the implementation of REDD+ initiatives; and third, planned relocation programmes in the Republic of Maldives (Maldives) developed to adapt to extreme weather events like tsunamis. Section 3 discusses the legal parameters of forced evictions in international human rights law. Section 4 concludes by setting out how a rights-based approach may assist in creating responses to climate change that are rooted in international human rights norms.

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