Climate change is a “threat multiplier.” This was the primary focus of an excellent piece in today’s Politico co-authored by the Hon. Sherri Goodman, former deputy undersecretary of defense, senior vice president and general counsel of CNA, and executive director of the CNA Military Advisory Board, and Gen. Gordon Sullivan, USA (ret), the 32nd chief of staff of the Army, president and chief executive officer of the Association of the United States Army, and member of the CNA Military Advisory Board.
The term ‘threat multiplier’ was first used in the CNA Military Advisory Board 2007 report, National Security and the Threat of Climate Change. Today’s piece by Goodman and Sullivan makes a strong case for why climate change was a threat multiplier when the term was first coined, and why it continues to be an issue of significant importance to U.S. national security. In the article, they state emphatically:
We saw the devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy — families without water, power and shelter. Superimpose on that kind of situation an already fragile political state, and you have a recipe for failed states and civil war. This is what the U.S. military is bracing for. That is why we are already actively engaged in planning against it. Just as sensible people plan ahead to minimize the damage from weather disasters, our nation must take precautions to reduce the risks of climate change.
The article is worth reading for both those familiar and new to the issue.