This paper considers the conflict impacts of climate change and outlines potential opportunities for peacebuilding in Solomon Islands. Climate change is not viewed as a standalone issue but as an embedded dimension of contemporary environmental, political, social, economic, and cosmological/spiritual settings. This paper was produced by Toda Peace Institute and authored by Kate Higgins, Pacific Projects Manager at Conciliation Resources, and Josiah Dora Maesuam National Coordinator for the UNDP Solomon Islands.
- Climate change is impacting upon the environment in which people’s identity, place-based histories and sense of well-being are centred. Environmental impacts of climate change may exacerbate existing conflict drivers and impact upon the capacity of communities to manage localised forms of conflict.
- External forms of project intervention at community level are a common cause of conflict. The paper points to the need for conflict sensitive climate-change adaptation strategies which understand localised power-relations and capacities and avoid creating dependency on outside ‘experts’.
- There is the potential for conflict arising from climate change-induced displacement and relocation of people from their island homes.