Dubai – UAE – UNFCCC COP28 CA Pavilion – December 10 – issues of human mobility in the context of climate change were discussed at the side event “Climate Change and Human Mobility in Mountain Areas:Uncovering New Evidence for Policymaking”.
Mountain areas worldwide are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. As a result of global warming, Andean glaciers have lost between 30% and more than 50% of their area since the 1980s, with grave consequences for water availability
The observed changes include increasing temperatures, changing seasonal weather, reductions in snow cover and duration at low elevations, loss of glacier mass, increased permafrost thaw, and an increase in the number and size of glacier lakes.
An increasing trend in disaster frequency has been observed in the Andes, the Himalayas, and the mountain regions of Africa.
A 2C° rise in global warming will lead to a 31-66% loss of glacier mass in Central Asia. The projections indicate negative consequences for the mountain cryosphere, biodiversity, ecosystem services, and human well-being as a result of changes induced by increasing temperatures.
The worsening impacts of climate change imply the need to consider economic and non-economic loss and damage, including for indigenous populations and other marginalized groups affected by reduced habitability of their ancestral lands.
The global stakeholders increasingly recognize climate action cannot be addressed in silos. Neither can human mobility in the context of climate change. More attention is needed to increase our collective understanding of the complex migration, environment, and climate change nexus in the mountain regions, including solutions for people to move, people on the move and people to stay.
In 2023, International Organization for Migration (IOM) in collaboration with partners launched a research initiative on “Assessing Migration, Environment, and Climate Change Nexus in the Mountain Areas”. The multiple waves of evidence gathering in the study areas in Ecuador, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan will help the national stakeholders to better understand the changing circumstances of local populations in terms of their vulnerability to environmental and climatic hazards, their migration experiences, and how this shape adaptation.
The side event is organized by IOM.
Video recording – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgqaROMG3M4