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Report says climate change poses risk to national and international security.

September 19, 2016

 

The Climate and Security Advisory Group (CSAG) - a group of 25 military and national security experts -issued a report detailing the risk that climate change poses to national and international security and setting forth their recommendations for the New Administration.

  • Last year the Department of Defense (DOD) called climate change a “threat multiplier.” The DOD identified the following areas of global climate change related risks: more recurring floods and droughts, more frequent extreme weather conditions, rising sea levels and decreasing Arctic cover.

  • The US operates 1774 coastal military installations in the U.S. and around the world which will grow increasing vulnerable to sea level rise and extreme weather.

  • Recommendations by the CSAG include dedicating a Cabinet-level position to focus on climate change and security concerns, advancing climate-security education, integrating climate into water-sharing agreements, and considering climate and security in conflict avoidance efforts, amongst others.

  • “It’s hard to energize people now, but it’s too late when the water is around your ankles,” said Ronald Keys, former commander of Air Combat Command.

Sources:

 

1. “Response to Congressional Inquiry on National Security Implications of Climate-Related Risks and a Changing Climate,” 23 July 2015, available at http://archive.defense.gov/pubs/150724-congressional-report-on-national-implications-of-climate-change.pdf.

2. “Military experts say climate change poses 'significant risk' to security,” 14 September 2016 available at https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/sep/14/military-experts-climate-change-significant-security-risk.

3. “Climate and Security Advisory Group: Briefing Book for a New Administration,” September 2016 available at https://climateandsecurity.org/briefingbook/.

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