Climate Migration: Research, Analyze, Implement–What can We Learn from Other Places?

October 22nd, 2020

Webinar Slide Deck

Climate change is a human rights issue. 13 million U.S. coastal residents are projected to be displaced by 2100 due to sea level rise alone, while many thousands are already being forced out of their homes due to hurricanes, flooding and wildfires. Uncoordinated and piecemeal efforts at the federal level leave the burden on local governments to prepare for the short and long-term impacts of these population movements in both receiving and shrinking communities. Adequate planning and preparation to reduce risk and avoid catastrophic outcomes must prioritize frontline communities and ensure that local residents are active participants in these efforts. Climate migration may also present opportunities for “climate haven” communities to grow safely, sustainably, and equitably if planning is coordinated and thoughtful.

This webinar will showcase recent research and work compiled by Conservation Law Foundation, Vermont Natural Resources Council, and Antioch University on the potential impacts of climate induced migration on receiving communities. Discussion will also center on how cities and towns across the country can start to plan and engage their community members on preparing for these impacts. Strategies to address climate-induced migration must prioritize the most impacted and least resourced communities.




Anna Marandi, National League of Cities

As Senior Specialist of Climate and Sustainability at the National League of Cities, Anna oversees the Leadership in Community Resilience program, a cohort of eight U.S. cities advancing their climate preparedness efforts. Anna is also an expert resource in climate-induced migration, regional climate action, and climate equity and inclusion.

Prior to joining NLC, Anna supported the Puget Sound Climate Change Preparedness Collaborative, a consortium of local and tribal governments, private sector entities, regional public agencies and non-profits focused on enhancing regional resilience and climate preparedness efforts. She has a background in film, media and foreign languages, and graduated with a Masters in Environmental Policy from The New School for Public Engagement.


Elena Mihaly, Conservation Law Foundation

Elena Mihaly is a Senior Attorney working in Conservation Law Foundation’s Clean Air and Water Program and Community Resilience Program. Elena’s work focuses on developing and implementing law and policy solutions to protect public health, enhance community climate preparedness, and ensure all communities have equal access to a clean and healthy environment.


Graduate Student Researchers, Antioch University New England

Raleigh Tacy

Shameika Hanson

Jessica Poulin


Raleigh Tacy is a recent graduate of Antioch University New England. He holds a Master’s degree in Environmental Studies and a Bachelor’s in Sociology. He has presented at conferences including Closing the Hunger Gap 2019 and Community Solutions 2018, an event he helped to coordinate and run with local activists. Previous research and work of his includes homelessness and outreach, climate change, sustainable development, population and migration change, food systems, and community building.


Shameika Hanson works at The Nature Conservancy as a Community Protection Specialist.  She connects with community leaders, residents, and coalitions in areas dealing with chronic flooding to help build local knowledge and capacity, so residents can better adapt to the changing coastline. She is currently finishing her Professional Science Masters (PSM) in Environmental Studies at Antioch University New England (AUNE) with a professional certificate in Climate Change Resilience. Her concentration is in sustainable development and climate change.


Jessica Poulin is a graduate student at Antioch University New England. She will be graduating in December 2020 with an MS in Environmental Science with a concentration in Sustainable Development and Climate Change. It was while teaching English in South Korea, that Jessica first began cultivating an environmental ethic that also had social and economic justice at its core. Fukushima was a devastating blow to the livelihoods of local fishers who depended on safe and healthy stocks of fish to earn a living. This experience was the first real exposure that Jessica witnessed to the harm that human actions do to both environment and people, and stoked her interest in both.

After returning to Vermont, Jessica worked with students in public schools who were on the autism spectrum. Here, she sought to engage students with the natural world and to cultivate a sense of place and stewardship tied to place. In this work, she also advocated for students’ self-autonomy over their own learning.

In her studies at Antioch, Jessica has become further interested in the intersections of environmental work with community building and empowerment. Much of this stems from her time spent as an educator. She is interested in how climate change will affect the environment, communities, land use, and sustainable transportation. Of particular interest are the intersections that all of these issues have with affordable housing, poverty, social and racial justice, and access to clean water, air, and recreation. She’s interested in implementing policy change, especially at the local level, which will result in systemic change and community empowerment.

Jessica also holds a BA in Creative Writing from Knox College. She has had experience as a Water Quality and Outreach Intern for the Winooski Natural Resources Conservation District, working with volunteers to sample impaired streams, and as a volunteer and then an Education and Outreach Intern for the Lake Champlain Basin Program. Currently, she works at the ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain as a Guest Services Representative. In her free time, she enjoys hiking the hills and mountains of Vermont, various crafts, and reading speculative science fiction.



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