Pacific exodus likely / Australia should take environmental refugees
Pacific exodus likely
October 09, 2006
Article from: The Courier-Mail
RISING sea levels caused by global warming could force the mass exodus of millions of Pacific Islanders as "environmental refugees".
Most are expected to head toward Australia, which has been urged to review its immigration program accordingly.
The overhaul is a key recommendation in a report by a coalition of aid, development, church and environment non-government organisations to be released today.
The report entitled Australia Responds: Helping Our Neighbours Fight Climate Change warns that climate change will threaten the Asia-Pacific region's economy and security unless governments and aid agencies prepare.
It states that with one of the world's highest rates of greenhouse gas emissions per capita, Australia makes a "disproportionate contribution" to climate change and had a moral obligation to take action.
"The average Australian produces more greenhouse pollution, uses more energy and has historically contributed more to the build-up in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere than the average person in any other country in the region," the report says.
It claims the nation's absolute emissions are comparable to Indonesia, with its 200 million people."
A CSIRO study was commissioned into climate change in the Asia-Pacific region as part of the roundtable report.
The study indicates:
> • Temperature increases throughout the region of 0.5C to 2C by 2030 and up to 7C by 2070.
> • A rise in sea levels of about 3cm to 16cm by 2030 and up to 50cm by 2070.
Research in 2002 estimated there would be 2.3 million migrants from south and South-East Asia as a result of a 1m sea-level rise.
World Vision chief executive Tim Costello yesterday said that with global warming increasing, environmental refugees would be inevitable and Australia was ill-prepared.
"It's looming. The environmental distress will be just enormous," Mr Costello said. "And whenever there is distress – like we've seen most recently in Iraq, Afghanistan and West Papua – the boats start to
Since 2001, citizens of Fiji, Tonga, Kiribati and Tuvalu have been able to enter New Zealand as environmental refugees displaced by climate change.
Australia 'should take' enviro refugees
October 09, 2006 12:00 -The Daily Telegraph
Article from: AAP
AUSTRALIA is culpable for the effects of global warming and should accept environmental refugees, the Australian Greens said today.
Environment Minister Ian Campbell this morning said Australia was working with Pacific Island nations to adapt to the rising sea levels and warmer temperatures caused by global warming.
But he said taking environmental refugees was not part of Australia's plan.
Greens leader Bob Brown said any environmental refugees pushed out of their homes because of global warming were an Australian responsibility.
"There is no more delinquent and culpable government in the Western world than the Howard government," Senator Brown said.
"This is another major issue coming like a tsunami to the whole world – the disastrous economic, environmental and social consequences of global change."