Advanced

Flykten undan klimatförändringar - en undersökning av möjligheten att hävda klimatförändringar som grund för skydd i annan stat

Ljung, Caroline LU (2017) JURM02 20171
Department of Law
Abstract
During many years, migration has been a part of people’s life and the reasons for migration have varied. One group of migrants that has become larger in recent years is the “climate refugees”. This concept has its foundation in the fact that these humans are forced to flee from the effects of climate changes. Humans are a big contributing factor to climate changes, mostly due to the large amount of carbon dioxide emissions. Among other things, climate changes are expected to result in changes in the atmospheric precipitation and raised sea levels. Since the awareness of this group of migrants has been raised relatively recently questions such as the extent of the protection and whether or not it is sufficient is of interest to analyze.

... (More)
During many years, migration has been a part of people’s life and the reasons for migration have varied. One group of migrants that has become larger in recent years is the “climate refugees”. This concept has its foundation in the fact that these humans are forced to flee from the effects of climate changes. Humans are a big contributing factor to climate changes, mostly due to the large amount of carbon dioxide emissions. Among other things, climate changes are expected to result in changes in the atmospheric precipitation and raised sea levels. Since the awareness of this group of migrants has been raised relatively recently questions such as the extent of the protection and whether or not it is sufficient is of interest to analyze.

There are several forms of protection for people who are fleeing. One form is the protection as a refugee. To be considered as a refugee a person has to have a well-founded fear of persecution due to one or several of the grounds for persecution in the refugee convention and the Swedish Aliens Act. Apart from being a refugee a person can be regarded as a person in need of subsidiary protection. Beyond this, in Sweden, a person can be regarded as otherwise in need of protection. This ground includes among other things protection from environmental disasters. However, this article is currently not applicable due to a temporary law. In those cases a person is not regarded to have reasons for protection other principles may be applicable. One principle is the principle of non-refoulement which is a protection from persecution, torture and other ill-treatments.

To receive protection in another state there cannot be a possibility to move within the home country in order to avoid persecution, the so called internal flight alternative. This is regarded to be possible if the movement is reasonable and suitable. A large number of the people moving away from the effects of climate change move within their own country and are therefore regarded as internally displaced persons.

Apart from the protection in the migration law there have been discussions about applying the complimentary protection that other instruments can offer, one example is instruments regarding human rights. There is no right to a healthy environment in the majority of the instrument but other rights may be breached in an indirect manner. Examples on rights that have been discussed are articles 2, 3 and 8 ECHR. In relation to climate changes, article 2 has been discussed within the meaning that environmental destruction can be a danger to human lives. Article 3 ECHR, protection from torture and other ill-treatment, embraces three types of damage; direct and intentional infliction of harm, purely naturally occurring harm and damage where the state is the predominant cause. In cases with people fleeing from climate change the contribution from developed countries to the climate changes has been discussed as a form of damage where a state is the predominant cause. Article 8, protection of private- and family life, has been discussed in relation to the risk of impact on a person’s physical and moral integrity that severe environmental damage may have. One challenge when applying human rights is the question about jurisdiction. In ECHR the jurisdiction is primarily territorial. Although there are exceptions and situations where an expulsion can give rise to a breach of article 3 ECHR is one example.

Instruments in environmental law have also been discussed as a possible form of protection. Among other things, these instruments regulate the question about responsibility for emissions. When states act contrary to their obligations responsibility can be established in accordance with ARSIWA. If established, states shall cease the act and assure that it will not be repeated. Since there, in the majority of the situations, is no specific right to a healthy environment a causal link has to be established in relation to another right in order to establish responsibility.

There is no univocal answer to the question if the protection of people fleeing climate changes is adequate. The protection in migration law can be regarded as inadequate but there can be a possibility to complimentary protection in human rights. Although, since there is usually not a right to a healthy environment a causal link to another right has to be established. To enable improved protection there is a need to review the current protection. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
Migration har länge förekommit och anledningarna till förflyttningen kan variera. En grupp av människor som nyligen fått ökad uppmärksamhet är så kallade ”klimatflyktingar”. Termen grundar sig i att dessa människor flytt undan klimatförändringarnas effekter. Vi människor är en stor bidragande faktor till klimatförändringarna, främsta orsaken är koldioxidutsläpp. Klimatförändringarna väntas få flera effekter, exempel är ändring av nederbördsmönstren och höjda havsnivåer. Då uppmärksamheten riktats mot denna grupp av migranter relativt nyligen är frågor såsom omfattningen av skyddet samt om detta skydd är tillräckligt av intresse att undersöka.

En variant av skydd för de människor som flyr är att erhålla status som flykting. För att anses... (More)
Migration har länge förekommit och anledningarna till förflyttningen kan variera. En grupp av människor som nyligen fått ökad uppmärksamhet är så kallade ”klimatflyktingar”. Termen grundar sig i att dessa människor flytt undan klimatförändringarnas effekter. Vi människor är en stor bidragande faktor till klimatförändringarna, främsta orsaken är koldioxidutsläpp. Klimatförändringarna väntas få flera effekter, exempel är ändring av nederbördsmönstren och höjda havsnivåer. Då uppmärksamheten riktats mot denna grupp av migranter relativt nyligen är frågor såsom omfattningen av skyddet samt om detta skydd är tillräckligt av intresse att undersöka.

En variant av skydd för de människor som flyr är att erhålla status som flykting. För att anses vara flykting krävs att personen upplever en välgrundad fruktan för att utsättas för förföljelse med anledning av en av de förföljelsegrunder som stadgas i flyktingkonventionen samt utlänningslagen. Utöver att erhålla skydd som flykting kan en person anses vara alternativt skyddsbehövande. I Sverige finns även grunden övrig skyddsbehövande, vilken bland annat omfattar människor som drabbats av en miljökatastrof. Denna bestämmelse tillämpas dock inte för närvarande med anledning av den tillfälliga lagen som nu är gällande rätt. Vid de fall en person inte omfattas av de ovan nämnda skyddsgrunderna finns det andra grunder som möjliggör för en person att stanna. Ett sådant exempel är principen om non-refoulement som skyddar mot utvisning till ett land där personen riskerar tortyr eller annan illabehandling.

För att erhålla skydd i en annan stat krävs att personen inte kan undgå förföljelse genom att flytta till en annan del av hemlandet, ett så kallat internflyktsalternativ. Detta anses endast vara aktuellt i de fall en flytt är rimlig och relevant. Många av de som flyr undan klimatförändringar flyttar främst inom sina hemländer och klassas därmed som internflyktingar.

Utöver det skydd som finns i migrationsrätten förs det diskussioner om att mänskliga rättigheter kan utgöra kompletterande skydd till människor som flyr undan klimatförändringar. I majoriteten av instrumenten rörande mänskliga rättigheter stadgas ingen uttrycklig rätt till en sund miljö. Dock finns det andra rättigheter som riskerar att inskränkas på ett indirekt vis. Exempel på sådana rättigheter är artiklarna 2, 3 och 8 EKMR. Inom ramen för artikel 2, rätten till liv, har diskussioner förts angående den fara för liv som miljöförstörelse kan utgöra. Av artikel 3, skydd mot tortyr eller annan omänsklig eller förnedrande behandling, omfattas tre varianter av skador: direkt och avsiktligt orsakad, naturligt uppkommen och skada där en stat är övervägande orsaken till uppkomsten. I fall med människor som flyr klimatförändringar har utvecklade länders utsläpp varit föremål för flera diskussioner inom ramen för kategorin där en stat är den övervägande orsaken till en skada. Artikel 8, rätten till privat- och familjeliv, har diskuterats i den meningen att allvarlig miljöförstöring kan öka risken för påverkan på en persons fysiska och moraliska integritet. En svårighet vid applikationen av instrument med mänskliga rättigheter är frågan om jurisdiktion. I EKMR är jurisdiktionen primärt territoriell men det finns undantag. Ett sådant är i fall där en utvisning kan leda till en inskränkning av artikel 3 EKMR.

Det har även förts diskussioner rörande frågan om miljörättsliga instrument kan utgöra grund för skydd. Dessa instrument behandlar bland annat frågan om ansvar för utsläpp. I stor utsträckning skuldbeläggs utvecklade länder då de historisk sett ansvarat för majoriteten av växthusgasutsläppen. När stater agerar felaktigt kan ansvar aktualiseras enligt ARSIWA. Vid ansvar enligt detta dokument åläggs stater att upphöra med det olagliga beteendet samt försäkra att det inte upprepas.

Det finns inget entydigt svar på frågan om det finns ett fungerande skydd för människor som flyr undan klimatförändringar utan detta beror mycket på situationen. Skyddet kan anses bristfälligt i migrationsrätten men möjlighet till skydd kan finnas i instrument rörande mänskliga rättigheter. Dock kan det finnas svårigheter att visa kausalsamband mellan miljöförstörelse och en artikel i dessa instrument. För att möjliggöra skydd för fler människor som har flytt från klimatförändringar finns det ett behov av att undersöka möjligheten av en breddning av det skydd som föreligger idag. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Ljung, Caroline LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
The Flight from Climate Change - a Study of the Possibility of Claiming Climate Change as a Basis for Protection in Another State
course
JURM02 20171
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Folkrätt, EU-rätt, Migrationsrätt, Klimatflykting, Mänskliga rättigheter, Paris Agreement, EKMR, Human Rights, Climate refugee, ECHR.
language
Swedish
id
8908729
date added to LUP
2017-06-08 11:24:02
date last changed
2017-06-08 11:24:02
@misc{8908729,
  abstract     = {During many years, migration has been a part of people’s life and the reasons for migration have varied. One group of migrants that has become larger in recent years is the “climate refugees”. This concept has its foundation in the fact that these humans are forced to flee from the effects of climate changes. Humans are a big contributing factor to climate changes, mostly due to the large amount of carbon dioxide emissions. Among other things, climate changes are expected to result in changes in the atmospheric precipitation and raised sea levels. Since the awareness of this group of migrants has been raised relatively recently questions such as the extent of the protection and whether or not it is sufficient is of interest to analyze. 

There are several forms of protection for people who are fleeing. One form is the protection as a refugee. To be considered as a refugee a person has to have a well-founded fear of persecution due to one or several of the grounds for persecution in the refugee convention and the Swedish Aliens Act. Apart from being a refugee a person can be regarded as a person in need of subsidiary protection. Beyond this, in Sweden, a person can be regarded as otherwise in need of protection. This ground includes among other things protection from environmental disasters. However, this article is currently not applicable due to a temporary law. In those cases a person is not regarded to have reasons for protection other principles may be applicable. One principle is the principle of non-refoulement which is a protection from persecution, torture and other ill-treatments. 

To receive protection in another state there cannot be a possibility to move within the home country in order to avoid persecution, the so called internal flight alternative. This is regarded to be possible if the movement is reasonable and suitable. A large number of the people moving away from the effects of climate change move within their own country and are therefore regarded as internally displaced persons. 

Apart from the protection in the migration law there have been discussions about applying the complimentary protection that other instruments can offer, one example is instruments regarding human rights. There is no right to a healthy environment in the majority of the instrument but other rights may be breached in an indirect manner. Examples on rights that have been discussed are articles 2, 3 and 8 ECHR. In relation to climate changes, article 2 has been discussed within the meaning that environmental destruction can be a danger to human lives. Article 3 ECHR, protection from torture and other ill-treatment, embraces three types of damage; direct and intentional infliction of harm, purely naturally occurring harm and damage where the state is the predominant cause. In cases with people fleeing from climate change the contribution from developed countries to the climate changes has been discussed as a form of damage where a state is the predominant cause. Article 8, protection of private- and family life, has been discussed in relation to the risk of impact on a person’s physical and moral integrity that severe environmental damage may have. One challenge when applying human rights is the question about jurisdiction. In ECHR the jurisdiction is primarily territorial. Although there are exceptions and situations where an expulsion can give rise to a breach of article 3 ECHR is one example. 

Instruments in environmental law have also been discussed as a possible form of protection. Among other things, these instruments regulate the question about responsibility for emissions. When states act contrary to their obligations responsibility can be established in accordance with ARSIWA. If established, states shall cease the act and assure that it will not be repeated. Since there, in the majority of the situations, is no specific right to a healthy environment a causal link has to be established in relation to another right in order to establish responsibility. 

There is no univocal answer to the question if the protection of people fleeing climate changes is adequate. The protection in migration law can be regarded as inadequate but there can be a possibility to complimentary protection in human rights. Although, since there is usually not a right to a healthy environment a causal link to another right has to be established. To enable improved protection there is a need to review the current protection.},
  author       = {Ljung, Caroline},
  keyword      = {Folkrätt,EU-rätt,Migrationsrätt,Klimatflykting,Mänskliga rättigheter,Paris Agreement,EKMR,Human Rights,Climate refugee,ECHR.},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Flykten undan klimatförändringar - en undersökning av möjligheten att hävda klimatförändringar som grund för skydd i annan stat},
  year         = {2017},
}