The domestic politics of climate change in the Pacific Islands

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    Much scholarly attention has been paid to the issue of climate change in the Pacific Islands, in terms of its geopolitical implications, and through the lens of mitigation and adaptation policies and strategies. Comparatively little focus has been given to the domestic politics of climate change in the region: How a changing climate is affecting internal political dynamics. This article traces the boundaries of a new research agenda on the impacts of climate change within Pacific states as an animating political dynamic. It considers climate change as a possible source of political change and contestation; as a critical domestic policy issue; and as a driver of political participation and organisation. Climate change is an existential threat to the Pacific Islands, yet it has unique power as a mass mobilising factor in the largely localised and fragmented politics of the region. We conclude with some reflections on the potential of climate change as a key political driver in the region, and fruitful avenues for future research.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalAsia Pacific Viewpoint
    Publication statusPublished - 2021


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