Refugee Protection in Times of the Climate Emergency: The Role of Externalisation Policies
In January 2020, the UN Human Rights Committee ruled that people who flee the effects of climate change and disasters should not be returned to their country of origin if essential human rights would be at risk on return. At the same time, powerful states are stopping refugee movements in their tracks, often referring them to protection in transit states that undercut their human rights. Will the recognition of climate-related motives for flight be met by another round of externalization policies? Or will the intensifying debate on the climate emergency challenge their legitimacy?