Delivered to the Energy and Climate Change Committee at the British House of Commons, former UK Special Representative for Climate Change, John Ashton CBE, gave a very insightful statement on the impact climate change has on UK diplomacy and security. While his statement was based on his experience as a UK official, and directed at the British state, his points are more broadly applicable.
Ashton begins by pointing out the relevance of climate instability abroad, to UK stability:
…failure to deal with climate change would amplify already dangerous stresses arising from food, water, and energy insecurity. That poses a potentially unmanageable combination of systemic risks to the security and prosperity of our country. So climate diplomacy is now core business for diplomats…
He goes on to describe the role climate change should play in diplomatic matters, asserting that climate change should be elevated beyond the traditional “green” sphere, and to the high politics realm of national security.
These are important and timely ideas that deserve more attention. The whole transcript is worth a read.