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UNDP Links Resource-based Conflicts in Asia-Pacific to Climate Change

UNDPApril 2013: The Asia-Pacific Resource Centre (APRC) of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) has released a research paper analyzing the links among security, natural resources and climate change, and recommending options to maintain peace and security in the region.

The paper, titled “Climate Change Fuelling Resource-Based Conflicts in the Asia-Pacific,” is issued as part of a series of Asia-Pacific Human Development Technical Background Papers.

The paper presents case studies of resource-based conflicts that have been caused or exacerbated by the impacts of climate change in East, South and West Asia, and the Pacific. It includes information on conflicts induced by water and food scarcity, and human migration.

The authors note that climate change has been framed mainly within scientific and environmental discourse, and less within a development and security context. They recommend that: countries prioritize natural resource management especially in relation to “conflict and natural resource fault lines;” and that National Adaptation Programmes of Action (NAPAs) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) strategies incorporate conflict prevention and resolution strategies, and ensure comprehensive participation processes.

The paper supports the use of regional agreements and mechanisms for coordination, calling on Asia-Pacific countries to incorporate mitigation and resolution strategies into national and regional policies and legislation. It also recommends the advancement of climate change and security issues in multilateral bodies and UN agencies, including the UN Security Council, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), UNDP and the UN Department of Political Affairs (UNDPA). [Publication: Climate Change Fuelling Resource-Based Conflicts in the Asia-Pacific] [APRC Technical Papers Webpage]