International migration and climate change: a post-Copenhagen perspective on options for Kiribati and Tuvalu

The outcome of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference was a great disappointment for many participating governments, especially those from the Pacific Islands. The atoll states of Kiribati, Tuvalu and Marshall Islands were all expecting some meaningful commitments to reduce emissions. The failure to achieve these meant more attention had to be focussed on adaptation strategies. This chapter explores some dimensions of on-going population growth and urbanisation in Kiribati and Tuvalu in the wider context of international migration as an adaptation strategy. Both countries have a tradition of temporary labour migration overseas and in recent years some limited access to residence in New Zealand has been provided through an annual ballot via a special Pacific Access Category in immigration policy. The chapter explores several hypothetical migration scenarios and their impacts on the projected population growth for the two countries through to 2030.

Associated spaces

Kiribati , Marshall Islands , Tuvalu

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