I’ve never been to New Zealand but I’d love to go; but, if I were to go it sounds as if I’d just have to live there. New Zealand is experiencing and influx of immigrants that are moving there for only environmental reasons.
Liam Clifford, a director of London-based GlobalVisas, writes on the company’s website that while some eco-migrants are from low-lying island nations, many are wealthy Americans and Europeans choosing to start a new life in New Zealand.
“It is seen as a country with a temperate climate that will escape extreme weather. It has a superior environmental record and is developing renewable fuels, and is shielded from conflicts by the Pacific Ocean.”
John Zamick chose New Zealand as a new home for his family for entirely environmental reasons.
In the UK rising temperatures and sea levels threatened to turn the “semi-arid” East Anglia region into a desert – if the low-lying plains are not swamped by rising seas instead.
The businessman, who now co-directs a biodiesel company in Nelson, saw the writing on the wall when he studied the droughts and other long-term environmental effects of global warming in Europe and North Africa.
In 1984 and again in 1991, the IDF air-lifted thousands of Ethiopian jews to Israel under the Law of Return. Called Falashas (strangers) by their neighbors but more properly known as Beta Israel, the immigrants were secretly flown out of famine and rebellion to the Holy Land.
Today in Ethiopia, there is a group of people called the Falash Mora. They are the christian descendants of ethiopian jews who converted out of fear of persecution. They are returning to Isreal now in a much slower process than their relatives the Beta Israel, the Canadian Jewish News reports. The Falash Mora are able to return because of family reunification laws in Israel.
These people will be leaving their dirt-floored huts and their $1US/day jobs for life in the only true liberal democracy in the middle east. It will be a difficult adjustment, but the Israeli ministry of Immigrant Absorption is on the job.
Many of the Falash Mora have converted back to Judaism. They are seen to practise the faith with a strong piety not seen amongst many jews. The chief Rabbi in Israel has declared them as jews, because they originally converted out of fear and persecution.
As with almost everything that occurs in the middle east, the immigrations are controversial. They are certainly taxing on Israel, and as the process drags on, it becomes less and less clear who are really jews and who have taken up the mantle in order to gain entry to Israel.