The UK Embassy, Washington, hosted a Climate Security Tweetathon yesterday, sponsored by the Center for Climate and Security and the Center for a New American Security. In the spirit of the special relationship between the US and the UK, it included a Q&A session via twitter, with CCS Advisory Board member Rear Admiral David Titley, US Navy (ret) and Rear Admiral Neil Morisetti, British Royal Navy (ret). The tweetathon was part of a broader effort by the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) on climate change. The US and the UK have a history of leadership in the climate-security space (see here and here for more). Below is a transcript of the Climate Security Q&A with Admiral Titley and Admiral Morisetti, (which is very nuanced, given the 140 character twitter limit). For additional tweets on climate security see @CntrClimSec on Twitter. (more…)
The following is Briefer No. 24 from the Center for Climate and Security
By Sandra Fatorić, Ph.D., Research Fellow
The U.S. Department of Defense’s recently-released Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap states: “As climate change affects the availability of food and water, human migration, and competition for natural resources, the Department’s unique capability to provide logistical, material, and security assistance on a massive scale or in rapid fashion may be called upon with increasing frequency.”[i] Within this document, “human migration” is not a throwaway line. There are real concerns across governments, including those institutions normally focused on more traditional security risks, that climate change is, and will have, a marked effect on human migration. This article posits that the developed – not just the developing – world may need to seriously consider migration as a potentially viable adaptation option to climate change. (more…)
The United States and China concluded a joint climate agreement yesterday. While the effect of this agreement on the rate and scale of climate change is potentially significant, it may also serve a broader geopolitical benefit as the United States gradually “rebalances” its foreign and security policy to the Asia-Pacific region, and pursues other national security interests in forums such as the UN Security Council.
Enduring tensions between China and the United States (and its allied and partner nations) over the South China Sea, as well as a broad range of other difficult dynamics in the relationship (e.g. cyber warfare, U.S. concerns over a growing and more assertive Chinese military, human rights, consistent disagreement at the UN Security Council, and competing proposals for free trade zones in the region, one that excludes China and the other that’s China-led), are likely to continue for some time to come. However, an agreement of this kind can spill over into other areas of the relationship, thereby broadening the aperture for U.S. cooperation (and competition) with China on a range of issues of core concern to U.S. national security.
In other words, this is not just a climate agreement. It’s also a trust-building exercise that may offer the United States a greater amount of freedom and flexibility in pursuing the national security goals of the US and its allied and partner nations.
Last Friday the Mediterranean areas around Southern Italy experienced a rare “Medicane” event of tropical storm-like conditions. Jeff Master’s explains the science behind these rare weather events, and the likelihood of seeing more of them under a changing climate.
Storms of this nature are just one more stress to the small Italian island that is also a main point of entry to the European Union for migrants and refugees from places like Syria and Eritrea. The voyage from point of origin to the shores of Europe and Italy is no cruise (more…)