Climate Change, (In)Security, and Women’s Narratives in the Lake Chad Region
From Ceyanna Meroniuk
Over the past decade, Lake Chad – located between Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria – has been held up in international discussions as a key example of the conflict and security implications of climate change. Narratives about the role of climate change in conflict around Lake Chad have been advanced by heads of state in the region, regional institutions, UN agencies, external political leaders, think tanks, and others, tied to a range of geopolitical, economic, and climate-related agendas – despite the absence of meaningful evidence. In the context of these broader discussions, women leaders and activists from the region have mobilised ‘climate (in)security’ narratives to advance their own demands for environmental and climate action, gender justice, Indigenous rights, and more. In this talk, I’ll examine the broader emergence and circulation of narratives about climate change and conflict in the Lake Chad region, the ways in which key women leaders and activists have defined and discussed ideas of climate (in)security, and what these narratives might tell us to about the meaning, nature, and experiences of climate-related (in)security.