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Discrete Dynamics in Nature and Society
Volume 3, Issue 2-3, Pages 227-238

Environmental refugees: Consequences and policies from a western perspective

Department of Geography, Concordia University, 1455 de Maisonneuve Blvd. West, Quebec, Montreal H3G 1M8, Canada

Received 16 November 1998

Copyright © 1999 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Using Canada as an example, this paper argues that the phenomenon of the environmental refugee poses a series of important public policy issues for countries of resettlement. Arguing that Canada has an obligation to aid environmental refugees, for reasons of both self-interest and self-sacrifice, the paper then explores those reasons that have, so far, prevented Canada acting on these obligations. These lie, the paper argues, in a conjunction of both present public opinion and government practice. It is therefore in these realms that action to remove impediments to policy change must now occur.