The Center for Climate & Security

FEMA Administrator Testifies That Hurricanes are Affected by Climate Change

NOAA GOES-16_HurricaneMaria_PuertoRicoBy Dr. Marc Kodack

In case you missed it: On July 24, the U.S. House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Environment held a hearing on “FEMA’s Natural Preparedness and Response Efforts During the Coronavirus Pandemic.” The sole witness was Mr. Peter Gaynor, Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), an agency of the Department of Homeland Security. The following is a citation to the witness’s written statement, and a verbatim transcript of an exchange between a Member and the witness. (more…)

Climate Change in Russia and the Weaponization of Wheat

Russialsta_tmo_2010208_lrgBy Leah Emanuel

As temperatures in the Russian Arctic rapidly increase and permafrost continues to melt, Russian land feasible for wheat production is beginning to grow. In a new op-ed published in The National Interest, the Hon. Sherri Goodman, Chair of the Board of the Council on Strategic Risks, and Clara Summers of American University’s School of International Service, assess the possibility of Russia weaponizing their wheat.

While wheat makes up only 2.3% of Russia’s total exports, this small percentage constitutes a major portion of the global wheat export market. “Russia is the world’s largest wheat exporter,” Goodman and Summers write, “and is expected to control 20 percent of grain export markets by 2028.” Land changes due to climate change will only expand this global power. According to the authors, it is likely that Russia’s wheat-suitable land will expand by 4.3 million km² in boreal regions,, and the government has already announced that it intends to take advantage of these impacts of climate change for its agricultural and economic benefit. (more…)

Goodman and Bergenas: Why the US Needs to Restructure its National Security Strategy

SouthPorticoBy Vanessa Pinney

This interview is part of a series in which Center for Climate and Security (CCS) interns interview members of the CCS Advisory Board and other key voices in the climate and security field. Vanessa Pinney separately interviewed Sherri Goodman, the former U.S. Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Environmental Security and current senior member of the CCS Advisory Board, and Johan Bergenas, the Senior Director of Public Policy at Vulcan Inc., about their recent joint article “The United States Needs a Natural Security Strategy to Regain Our Global Leadership.” In the article, the authors call for a restructuring of the U.S. National Security Strategy to confront the growing threats of climate change and natural resource depletion. The responses have been edited for length and clarity. (more…)

A Climate Change Framework for the UK’s Ministry of Defence – Lessons for NATO?

Royal_Navy_SAR_Helicopter_on_Big_Torry_Hill,_Ochils_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1660779By Dr. Marc Kodack

The United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence (MOD) recently commissioned RAND Europe to examine climate change’s effects on MOD’s activities, and its attendant security implications, to assist the MOD in creating an updated climate change strategy. This examination produced a proposed framework for MOD’s leaders to use for assessing climate change risks to its mission, as well as multiple policy recommendations for addressing the challenges and seizing the opportunities climate change presents to the MOD, as it executes its global strategic mission now and out to 2035. (more…)

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