IOM Ethiopia and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change join hands to integrate migration into environmental policies

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) in coordination with the Ethiopian Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MEFCC) organized a capacity building workshop on knowledge exchange on migration, environment and climate change among policymakers. The two-day program which aimed to better integrate migration into environmental policies, disaster risk reduction as well as climate change adaptation strategies, also briefed the gathering to take environmental migration into account in migration management policies at a national level.

The workshop, which drew the participation of various ministries at both the federal and regional levels, was an opportunity to build the capacity and facilitate exchange of policymakers from different sectors of the Government, an important to step to address the cross-cutting issue of environmental migration.

In her opening remarks, Ms. Yamelaksira Tamene, Director for Technology Development and Transfer, MEFCC, emphasized Ethiopia’s enhanced vulnerabilities to climate change and Ethiopia’s proactive adaptation and mitigation policies. The Government of Ethiopia launched the country’s National Adaptation Plan to climate change in September 2017 and has identified 18 goals that are to be implemented at national and sub-national level.

The IOM Deputy Chief of Mission, Jian Zhao, touched upon the notion that migration is an age-old way to adapt to changing environmental conditions and that if migration is managed well, and conducted in a safe, orderly and regular way, it can function as a proactive adaptation strategy to climate change. The statement encapsulates IOM’s objective to facilitate migration as an adaptation strategy and enhance the resilience of communities affected by climate change.

The workshop built on IOM’s capacity building programme on Migration, Environment and Climate Change and was a part of IOM’s Better Migration Management project, supported by the European Union.

As the leading intergovernmental agency working on migration, the IOM recognizes the necessity to step up national, regional and international efforts to address human mobility challenges associated with environmental factors and climate change. IOM has been engaging in research, policy and advocacy efforts, and operational activities in the area of migration, environment and climate change since the 1990s, seeking to bring environmental migration to the heart of international, regional and national concerns in collaboration with its Member States, observers and partners.

Alemayehu Seifeselassie, Tel: +251116611117 (Ext. 455), Mobile: +251911639082, Email: salemayehu@iom.int

Participants of the workshop during a group discussion