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Sahel: recurrent climate shocks propel migration; resilience efforts face challenges

Recurrent climate-related shocks in West Africa’s Sahel region are having severe impacts on vulnerable populations, with many people resorting to new forms of migration that bring serious protection risks. In this context, this field report by Refugees International argues that a lack of coherence and coordination is seriously threatening the effectiveness of new resilience-building initiatives launched by the United Nations and others, and urges that greater support is required.

Among the report’s conclusions are that, in light of the serious protection risks created by distress migration, far more research and resources must be devoted to better tracking and monitoring. In addition, all stakeholders must act quickly to address the significant coordination and other challenges facing effective implementation of the region’s numerous resiliency-building initiatives. Also, reversing the growing resiliency deficit in the Sahel will not be possible unless the countervailing pressures of population growth and rapid climate change are addressed.