In this report the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) defines a climate refugee as “Persons or roups of persons who, for reasons of sudden or progressive climate-related change in the environment that adversely affects their lives or living conditions, are obliged to leave their homes either temporarily or permanently, and who move either within their country or abroad.”
They advocate for the development of a new legal framework for the protection of climate refugees that recognize climate-induced displacement and protects those displaced by weather-related hazards (estimated at over 21 million people per year).
"The international legal framework as it stands is not fit for the humanitarian challenge of climate refugees. Given the historic injustice at the heart of the climate crisis, whereby those affected first and worst by climate breakdown are most often those with the least historical responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions, it is morally imperative and critically important to the achievement of the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that the international community urgently work together to protect climate refugees by... developing protections for those already affected by the climate crisis."
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