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RELEASE: U.S. Military Leaders Encouraged by Republican Climate Resolution

us_navy_military_sealift_command_underway_replenishment_oiler_usns_walter_s-_diehl_provides_fuel_and_suppliesRELEASE: U.S. Military Leaders Encouraged by Republican Climate Resolution

Washington, D.C. — The Center for Climate and Security (CCS), a policy institute with an Advisory Board of retired senior military officers and national security experts, is encouraged by the recently-introduced Republican Climate Resolution in the U.S. House of Representatives. Francesco “Frank” Femia and Caitlin Werrell, Co-Founders and Directors, the Center for Climate and Security, noted:

“This resolution demonstrates that the security risks of climate change are a reality that partisanship cannot continue to obscure. The Department of Defense and intelligence community have recognized this issue across both Republican and Democratic Administrations, and it’s heartening to see Republican policy-makers from all parts of the country acting on that.”

The resolution, sponsored by Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (NY-21) with 16 Republican co-sponsors, highlights the designation of climate change as a “threat multiplier” in the 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review, and calls for the Republican Party to develop a commensurate response. Given the practical nature of the resolution, the response from senior military leaders at the Center for Climate and Security and elsewhere was strong:

Admiral Frank “Skip” Bowman, U.S. Navy (ret), Member of the Advisory Board, the Center for Climate and Security, Former Director of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program: “I support this Republican Climate Resolution.  Putting aside arguments of cause and effect, there are measured and measurable data and global events that must be considered and accounted for in our defense planning.” 

Rear Admiral David W. Titley, U.S. Navy (ret), Member of the Advisory Board, The Center for Climate and Security, Former Oceanographer of the Navy: “I’m very excited to see the Republican Climate Change Resolution introduced to the Congress.  Our nation’s long-term security is critically dependent on moving away from fossil-based fuels to lessen the worst risks of climate change.  This change will not happen without support and leadership from the Congress, in partnership with the Administration.   The  Republican Climate Change Resolution is a good first step towards a serious bi-partisan policy discussion.”

Commander David “Deke” Slayton, U.S. Navy (ret), Member of the Advisory Board, The Center for Climate and Security: “The Republican Climate Resolution ably and well serves as an imperative and call for action for our Nation. The resolution captures the issues of an observable,  changing climate and the dynamic events we see unfolding in the worlds oceans today. These critical events demand U.S. Congressional and national executive leadership, now. ”

Sherri Goodman, Member of the Advisory Board, The Center for Climate and Security, Former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense: “The Republican Climate Resolution, whose signers represent a broad cross-section of America affected by climate change, from  our coasts to rural agricultural areas, soundly recognizes that climate change is a “threat multiplier”  that will adversely affect our national security interests as well as all Americans, where we live and work.  The leaders of this effort should be commended for recognizing that we need both to study and address changes in our global and regional climates, and build more resilient communities for America’s future.”

Vice Admiral Lee Gunn, U.S. Navy (ret): “I am enthusiastically adding my support for this Republican Climate Resolution (Ms. Stefanik, et al., ‘Expressing the commitment of the House of Representatives to conservative environmental stewardship.’). The resolution acknowledges, among other things, the enormous national security importance of stewardship of the environment for America. Our armed services depend on predictable conditions at home for training, maintenance, drills and exercises, and bases, all components of building ready military forces. Also, the demands worldwide on not only our military but our economic, diplomatic and political power, demands on all elements of our national power, will inevitably be greater if the environment becomes less predictable. The Republican Climate Resolution supports not only traditional American values, but the practical imperative of maintaining our security at home and abroad.”

Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, U.S. Army (ret), former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, Visiting Professor of Government and Public Policy, the College of William and Mary: “The Republican Climate Change Resolution being introduced in the Congress–the Gibson Resolution under new leadership–symbolizes my political party’s recognition of climate change’s impact on national security, an impact already being felt from the shipyards at Hampton Roads to the Ship Channel in Houston, Texas.  Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and her 16 Republican co-sponsors are to be congratulated for their herculean efforts to bring my political party to a firm recognition of these risks.” 

Read the Republican Climate Resolution here:

To speak with a CCS expert and/or Advisory Board member on this topic contact Francesco Femia, ffemia at climateandsecurity dot org, 202-246-8612

Related material: The U.S. military has been planning for climate change impacts from as early as 2003, as expressed in this collection of documents.

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