Participation in workshop “Geopolitics of Climate Change in the Middle East and North Africa: Pathways for Regional Security and Stability”
On 9 November, project officer Achref Chibani participated in the above workshop, organised by Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung in Casablanca. The workshop brought together international experts for in-depth discussions on the intricate challenges within the Climate Change Geopolitics Nexus in the MENA region.
During his presentation, he highlighted that climate migration in the MENA region can be seen through the lens of a push-pull analysis: extreme weather events and climate change are pushing communities out of vulnerable environments and towards regions with more stable and livable climates. While the push-pull paradigm has been widely discredited in academic and policy circles, its latent influence remains in contemporary popular thinking and media discourses around migration.
Such a push-pull reading assumes that the Middle East and North Africa is a region that will see massive outward migration as conditions become unlivable. In turn, this has fueled European unrest around the inevitable ‘hordes’, ‘swarms’ or ‘floods’ of migrants who will arrive in Europe, attracted by its temperate climate. And, finally, this discourse justifies ever more extreme border security strategies to reinforce the continent’s border regimes. This analysis fundamentally misunderstands and misdiagnoses the relationship between migration and climate change and thus produces faulty climate-migration policy. To put it bluntly, migrants do not check annual rainfall level projections before they travel.