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Climate Security Fellows Report 2021

By Esther Sperling

These are unprecedented times. The world continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, while democracies and economies around the globe are tested. Through it all, climate change is destabilizing natural and social systems, and driving new security risks. It has never been more important to engage the next generation of leaders on addressing these systemic risks.

The Climate and Security Advisory Group (CSAG), a project of the Center for Climate and Security, founded the Climate and Security Fellowship to do just that. The 2019-2020 Climate and Security Fellows are a distinguished group of professionals, all with one thing in common: a desire to address the security threats of climate change. They are emerging leaders in their respective fields of study and bring the necessary diversity of perspectives and backgrounds to address such wicked problems.

A self-selected group of Fellows wrote briefers on emerging climate security vulnerabilities. Each chose a topic that they felt was underrepresented in the current literature and deserved further examination. Our hope is that these briefers will spark a broader conversation on these vital security concerns.

I want to thank the Climate and Security Advisory Group for their support and thank all of the climate and security experts who briefed this cadre of fellows including: Hon. Sharon Burke, Hon. John Conger, Col. Mike Gremillion, USAF, Hon. Sherri Goodman, Dr. Rod Schoonover, and Joan VanDervort. Congratulations to the 2019-2020 class of Fellows. We look forward to watching their careers progress, and to their guidance of the next generation of leaders!

Esther Sperling, Co-Founder and Program Director, CSAG Climate and Security Fellowship Program

Read the report here.

The opinions expressed in this report are of the authors and do not reflect the positions of the affiliated organizations.

Center for Climate and Security Fellows Selected for Key Positions in the Biden Administration

The Center for Climate and Security (CCS) would like to congratulate its Senior Research Fellows Kate Guy and Dr. Josh Busby for their appointments in the Biden Administration. Ms. Guy will serve as Senior Advisor at the U.S. Department of State, within the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs. Her role with the Administration will focus on confronting growing global climate and environmental security challenges. This summer, Dr. Busby began a year-long appointment as senior advisor for climate in the U.S. Department of Defense, where he is involved in the Biden administration’s prioritization of climate change, including the National Defense Strategy.  

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New Analysis from the Center for Climate and Security – Ten Years After its Founding

By Francesco Femia and Caitlin Werrell

The Center for Climate and Security (CCS) has been producing cutting-edge analysis on the security risks of climate change since its founding ten years ago – back when few were paying attention to this dimension of national and international security. Today, climate security risks are unfortunately on the rise across the world, and the need for continued analysis (and urgent policy action) on the issue has never been greater. In this context, the CCS team continues to deliver informed warnings about the state of climate security, and to offer solutions. Here is a list of notable output from CCS, and its experts, over the past few months.

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The U.S. Department of Defense Releases its Climate Adaptation Plan  

Today, the U.S. Federal Government released Climate Adaptation Plans from all of its agencies.

The Department of Defense (DoD) plan can be found here, as well as a statement from Secretary of Defense Austin and the DoD press release.  It’s an impressive successor to the 2014 Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap, and its ambition reflects the tone of this Administration – a tone set within its first week when President Biden signed Executive Order 14008, Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad.

See a more detailed assessment in this Defense One op-ed on the new strategy, by the Center for Climate and Security’s John Conger.

Stay tuned for more on other agency plans covering climate security.

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