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Climate change: Australia wants to take in Pacific Islanders

Climate change: Australia wants to take in Pacific Islanders

As of: November 10, 2023 7:22 am

The island state of Tuvalu is in danger of sinking into the Pacific Ocean. An agreement with Australia now provides residents with a form of climate asylum. It is not clear how many people the neighboring country is taking.

Australian media report on the agreement between the Australian government and the island state of Tuvalu under the title Climate Refuge: All Pacific Islanders are allowed to work, study and live in Australia. This was announced by Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese with Tuvalu’s Kousia Natanou. With this, the residents can escape the risk of sea level rise, which threatens their way of life and their existence.

Initially, 280 people are expected to come to Australia each year as part of the so-called “Good Pacific Neighbourhood” project; In total, Tuvalu has more than 11,000 people on nine islands that are just above sea level.

Australia’s Prime Minister Albanese is set to announce that his country will eventually offer climate asylum to the 11,200 people living in Tuvalu, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper. The daily quoted people familiar with the matter.

Island states consider this measure appropriate

Small island states in the Pacific are particularly affected by the effects of the climate crisis through storm surges, erosion and sea level rise. Australia is one of the world’s largest exporters of coal and one of the most polluting countries. Therefore, many island states consider Australia’s action necessary and morally appropriate.

According to UNICEF, the United Nations children’s fund, 20,000 children are displaced every day as a result of the climate crisis. By 2050, 140 million people could be displaced due to a changing climate.