High-level dialogue on climate induced migration outcomes document

Signed this 10th day of October, 2015 at Ambo Tarawa, KIRIBATI

His Excellency Beretitenti of Kiribati, Anote Tong

His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco

Honorable Prime Minister of Tuvalu Enele Sopoaga

Ulo o Tokelau Aliki Faipule Siopili Perez

Her Excellency Roving Ambassador /High Commissioner to the Pacific Island Countries, Litia Mawi  (Fiji)
Outcomes agreed! Conference panel and signatories comprising (left to right) Ms Paula Faiva, Head of Delegation from Tokelau; Honorable Enele Sosene Sopoaga, Prime Minister of Tuvalu; His Excellency Anote Tong, President of Kiribati; His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco; and Honorable Litia Mawi, Fiji Roving Ambassador and High Commissioner to Pacific Island Countries.

1. We the Heads of State and Government, and Representatives  of the Coalition of Low Lying Atoll Nations on Climate Change (CANCC) (Kiribati,Tuvalu and Tokelau) in partnership with Monacomet in Ambo, Kiribati for the inaugural High Level Dialogue on Climate Change Induced Migration and Displacement from 8-12 October, 2015 together with Fiji, Development Partners, The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands, regional and international organisations, including UNDP, UNESCAP, ILO, IOM, and UNHCR.

2. We are deeply concerned that the adverse impacts of climate change, including increased intensity of tropical cyclones, sea level rise, severe storm surges, more frequent and more extreme weather events, coral bleaching, salt water intrusion, higher king tides, coastal erosion, changing precipitation pattern, submersion of islands, and ocean acidification, are severely impacting our people and our way of life today and will impact more significantly in the future posing major existential challenges and threats to our people and their survival as distinct people and cultures. 

3. We highlight that while we are on the frontline and are already suffering from the impacts of climate change now, millions  of people in other areas in the Pacific and world-wide are facing the same fate if nothing is done urgently. We emphasise that climate change is a major universal calamity which knows no boundary and which requires urgent global solutions.

4. We are gravely concerned over the lack of effective international response to climate change despite clear empirical evidence on the ground in low-lying atoll nations, and scientific evidence in the IPCC 5th AR. We are fully cognisant of our peoples' extreme vulnerability to the inevitable climate-induced disasters which are growing in frequency and intensity over time and raising the potential of mass migration and the need for urgent adaptation action that include plans to relocate our people. 

5. We stress that for us, relocation is a response of last resort, but when it happens, a planned and dignified relocation for our people is supported. 

6. We draw attention to the fact that climate change related impacts are increasing the demand for migration and will continue to do so, and that this is already resulting in rural to urban migration and a demand for increasing opportunities for international labour migration.

7. We stress the importance of labour mobility and commend partners already working with us on this. labour mobility provides immediate climate change adaptation benefits and we invite the scaling up of existing initiatives and seek new and additional partnerships from the international community on urgent affirmative action for labour mobility of our people.

8. We emphasise that a healthy and more educated population will be better prepared and more resilient in meeting the challenges from climate change and therefore stress the important role of strengthened education, training and health programmes which are part of our adaptation and resilience building efforts to prepare our people. 

9. We are determined as frontline nations to the adverse impacts of climate change, to take leadership and seek durable and sustainable partnerships in the search for innovative solutions for the protection of our people, to save our homes, our cultures, and ensure a sustainable future for our people.

10. We are concerned over the lack of international legal framework that recognises the plight and protects the rights of climate displaced populations and their sovereignty.

11. We are fully committed as custodians of large ocean areas to safeguard this resource for our future generations. Oceans are very much a part of our identity, our livelihood, our existence and define who we are as distinct people and cultures. While rising sea levels are now threatening us, this same ocean can also provide opportunities that will strengthen the resilience and adaptive capacity of our people. We seek innovative partnerships that can optimize sustainable returns from this resource to our people as resource owners.

12. We therefore: 

a) Urge the international community and development partners to demonstrate greater political will and leadership critical for our nations and vulnerable peoples around the world to achieve a sustainable and safe future in line with the new sustainable development agenda "Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development" recently adopted by Leaders in New York which commits to leave no-one behind; 

b) Appeal to the global community to acknowledge its moral obligation to treat climate change with urgency taking into account that the consequences of inaction will be the demise of our low lying atoll nations and people, a violation of vulnerable peoples'  human rights, rights to survive, rights to food and water, rights to shelter (home), and rights to a safe, secure and sustainable future:

c) Applaud Fiji's leadership and moral response to the plight of CANCC members and encourage similar responses from the global community and reiterate our support  for the Suva Declaration;

d) Call on the international community, philanthropy, private  sector and all those with a capacity  to do so, to support  new, scaled up, and accessible financial resources to address urgent climate response mechanisms, including health, education and training programs to build the resilience of our people;

e) Call for partnerships to support  our efforts to prepare our people for "migration with dignity," capable  of contributing to other nations' economies and development processes as skilled migrant workers;

f) Invite new partners who can work with us on developing innovative labour mobility  programmes;

g) Implore the world’s leaders to take the decisive step in Paris, to conclude a climate  agreement that includes urgent mechanisms to support  the most vulnerable people  on the frontline of the changes to our climate  system, including through establishing a climate change  displacement coordination facility  as part of an internationally binding  loss and damage mechanism;

h) Call for a strengthened intergovernmental, regional and international process and the development of an action plan to assist  our nations respond and address the urgent  challenges emanating from cross border displacement of people  in the context  of disasters and climate  change;

i). We also call on the international community and all those with the capacity to assist, to support our urgent efforts for our people including immediate access for all low lying atoll nations to the Green Climate Fund, new and additional funding facilities and other mechanisms of support (financial and technical) for a holistic  approach to adaptation which builds our resilience towards achieving the following urgent priorities:

i) Clean water and supplementing our existing water resource;
ii) Protection of our coastlines;
iii) Climate proof infrastructure and sustainable development initiatives;
iv) Building up our islands to heights above the predicted sea level rise; and
v) Strengthening the capacity and preparedness of our people to the changes in the global climate system, through greater focus on health, education, workforce skills, communication and public awareness programmes.

A media release on this event is also available