Climate Migration: How is it Reshaping our Communities?


Climate change has had significant impacts on how humans migrate. While some impacts are better known, like managed retreat associated with sea level rise and flooding, other impacts are just being discovered and studied, like the long-term effects of climate migration on receiving communities. Antioch University students and faculty have been working with different regions on exploring the impacts of climate migration on communities. For more information on any of the projects below, contact Christa Daniels Ph.D, AICP, Senior Associate, CCPCR.

Climate Migration in Vermont: Receiving Areas, Key Demographics, and Potential Impacts on Natural and Social Resources 

As part of the Collaborative Service Initiative through Antioch University New England, Raleigh Tacy, Shameika Hanson, and Jessica Poulin conducted research into climate migration and its potential impacts for the state of Vermont. Antioch partnered with the state of Vermont and Conservation Law Foundation to conduct the research and generate a report. The four main goals of the report are: to identify migrant demographics and reasons for migration, to identify potential receiving areas within the state, to identify impacted resources, and share existing research and research-based recommendations to help in preparing for climate migrants. This was done through a review of general literature on climate migration that then shaped guiding questions and recommended further research into the impacts of climate migration on Vermont. The foundation of the report is the initial literature review conducted by Emma Okell. 

Listen to the webinar on the report

Rural Migration in the Climate Change and Post-Coronavirus Era

In the fall of 2020, Antioch University partnered with the CT River Joint Commissions to engage in a research project to understand and prepare for climate migration. As part of a Collaborative Service Initiative at Antioch University New England, Jo Corvus and Meagan Sylvia were the graduate students leading the project. 

Current studies, news articles and migration watchers are proclaiming a climate change and post pandemic migration to areas in the Northeast that are perceived to be healthier and economically safer than high density urban and fire and flood threatened areas. Regions such as the Connecticut River Valley of New Hampshire and Vermont are already seeing the early stages of this movement. Did what we see in the first ten months of the global pandemic, economic crisis, and ongoing racial justice movement mesh with what has previously been forecast for climate change-driven migration? What are the anticipated impacts of this migration? Their report addresses these questions. Check out the report here:

Upcoming Events


Policy Advocacy: Climate Change

This course will provide participants with step-by-step skills in utilizing the tools of democracy to take meaningful civic action on climate change. Participants will learn the levers for building political will and the essentials of climate change communication. You will apply your learning by taking action in collaboration with a local environmental organization, and further your learning with your peers via Antioch’s online learning platform and optional one-on-one meetings with the instructor.
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Climate Impacts: Vulnerability and Adaptation Planning

Local and regional governments are leaders in climate change due to their unique position to make a wide range of decisions that can mitigate and adapt to our changing climate. Because they are on the frontline, many communities have conducted vulnerability assessments and engaged in adaptation planning. This module will enable participants to assess impacts to a business, community, or sector based on specific climate projections for a specific locale.
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Climate Impacts: Communication, Facilitation, and Stakeholder Capacity Building

Collective actions at the societal level (civic or political action behaviors) include involvement and support of policies, plans, and funding for implementation of municipal projects that could increase local climate resilience. Community engagement with the issue of climate change typically is lacking at the local level. How individuals feel about climate change, how much they know about the issue, and how they act are all types of engagement that are needed for societal change.
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