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Where the rain falls: climate change, food and livelihood security, and migration

This comparative study highlights that rainfall variability and food insecurity are key drivers for human mobility. The empirical research is based on eight country case studies, including a 1,300 household survey and participatory research sessions involving 2,000 individuals. The results reveal that migration is an important risk management strategy for vulnerable households. Land scarce households trying to cope with food insecurity send migrants during the hunger season to find food or money to buy food. Migration is often temporary and seasonal, if migrants are successful, but can be permanent if options cannot be found to deal with rainfall variability and rural food insecurity. The report states that the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities – both in terms of minimising pressure on vulnerable populations and providing adaptation options – must underlie policy negotiations on climate induced migration and subsequent implementation at all levels.