Human mobility in the context of climate risk insurance

Krupanj-May 19,2014: After recent heavy rains, river Cadjavica went out of stream, causing catastrophic floods and mud slides, wich destroyed town of Krupanj in Macva district in central Serbia.

Extreme weather events caused or intensified by climate change, such as storms, flooding and droughts, as well as environmental degradation, such as soil salination or sea-level rise have long-term consequences for people's economic situation, health and safety.  Often they pose a serious threat to lives and livelihoods, especially in developing countries. To cope with the adverse consequences, many people may decide to move. This “climate-induced mobility” can take many forms and includes migration, displacement and planned relocation. Human mobility can be an effective coping strategy for vulnerable people as moving to a different place may provide necessary protection in the face of increasing disaster risk.

Although science does not allow us to make strong prognoses, it is fairly safe to assume that climate change will intensify patterns and volumes of human mobility. In addition, most people who move because of climate change will stay within the borders of their own countries; most of them will then return to their homes as soon as they can.

Adequate tools are required for governing climate-induced mobility. However, affected countries as well as German and international development agencies lack relevant experiences and proven approaches that help them shape climate change-induced mobility in a development- and needs-oriented way while reducing or  mitigating disaster-related displacement.

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH has commissioned adelphi to conduct a background study to illuminate the role that climate risk insurance may play in this regard. Through the use of various scenarios, the scoping study investigates how climate risk insurance may affect migration and displacement.