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Rethinking climate refugees and climate conflict: Rhetoric, reality and the politics of policy discourse

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  • Betsy Hartmann

    (CLPP Hampshire College, Massachusetts, USA)

Abstract

This paper critically examines the perceived threat of 'climate refugees' and 'climate conflict'. It locates the ideological roots of these concepts in development theories and policy narratives about demographically induced migration, environmental refugees and environmental security. While alarmist rhetoric around climate refugees and conflict has been deployed by a variety of actors, including U.N. agencies, development NGOs, national governments, security pundits and popular media, the paper concentrates on its strategic use by U.S. defence interests. It raises the question of how the portrayal of climate change as a security threat could further militarise the provision of development assistance and distort climate policy. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Betsy Hartmann, 2010. "Rethinking climate refugees and climate conflict: Rhetoric, reality and the politics of policy discourse," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 233-246.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jintdv:v:22:y:2010:i:2:p:233-246
    DOI: 10.1002/jid.1676
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/jid.1676
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Roe, Emery M., 1995. "Except-Africa: Postscript to a special section on development narratives," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 23(6), pages 1065-1069, June.
    2. Jessica Mercer, 2010. "Disaster risk reduction or climate change adaptation: Are we reinventing the wheel?," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 247-264.
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    Cited by:

    1. Shabana Khan & Ilan Kelman, 2012. "Progressive climate change and disasters: communicating uncertainty," Natural Hazards: Journal of the International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, Springer;International Society for the Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Hazards, vol. 61(2), pages 873-877, March.
    2. J.C. Gaillard, 2010. "Vulnerability, capacity and resilience: Perspectives for climate and development policy," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(2), pages 218-232.
    3. Dobes Leo & Jotzo Frank & Stern David I., 2014. "The Economics of Global Climate Change: A Historical Literature Review," Review of Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 65(3), pages 281-320, December.
    4. repec:spr:homoec:v:34:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s41412-017-0038-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:bla:asiaps:v:4:y:2017:i:1:p:158-165 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Hassani Mahmooei, Behrooz & Parris, Brett, 2012. "Why might climate change not cause conflict? an agent-based computational response," MPRA Paper 44918, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. repec:bla:glopol:v:8:y:2017:i::p:33-39 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. François Gemenne & Jon Barnett & W. Adger & Geoffrey Dabelko, 2014. "Climate and security: evidence, emerging risks, and a new agenda," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 123(1), pages 1-9, March.
    9. Lori M. Hunter & Sheena Murray & Fernando Riosmena, 2013. "Rainfall Patterns and U.S. Migration from Rural Mexico," International Migration Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(4), pages 874-909, December.

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