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5 things to know about Hurricanes, Hampton Roads and National Security

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) departs Naval Station Norfolk ahead of Hurricane Irene. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan Parde

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) departs Naval Station Norfolk ahead of Hurricane Irene. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan Parde

By Matt Connolly, Center for Climate and Security Virginia Project Fellow

With Hurricane Joaquin threatening to hit the eastern seaboard this weekend, the United States’ largest naval base is on high alert.  At Naval Station Norfolk, sailors are working to secure the base against impending flooding and prepare for Sortie Condition Bravo, an order for all Navy ships in Virginia’s military-saturated Hampton Roads region to be prepared to leave port within 24 hours in order to avoid damage to ships and piers from high winds and seas.  
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Among DC Policymakers and Security Officials, All Eyes on Hampton Roads

Sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Mason (DDG 87) look on as the guided-missile frigate USS Nicholas (FFG 47) departs Naval Station Norfolk ahead of Hurricane Irene. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Aaron Chase/Released)

Sailors aboard the USS Mason (DDG 87) look on as the USS Nicholas (FFG 47) departs Naval Station Norfolk ahead of Hurricane Irene. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Aaron Chase/Released)

By Michael Wu, Policy Fellow, The Center for Climate and Security

“One area of immediate concern… is Hampton Roads.”– Judge Alice Hill, Senior Adviser for Preparedness and Resilience, National Security Council

Last week, students and faculty at Georgetown University Law Center held an event entitled, Threat Multiplier: Exploring the National Security Law and Policy Implications of Climate Change. The audience heard from a number of important members of the climate and security community. Notably, each of them mentioned Hampton Roads as a region that will present challenges and opportunities for United States national security and military readiness. (more…)

Event: Threat-Multiplier: Exploring the National Security Law and Policy Implications of Climate Change

A U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter assigned to the 1st Battalion, 140th Aviation Regiment, California Army National Guard conducts annual helicopter bucket training at Irvine Lake, Calif., April 5, 2014, to prepare for wildfire season

A U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter assigned to the 1st Battalion, 140th Aviation Regiment, California Army National Guard conducts annual helicopter bucket training at Irvine Lake, Calif., to prepare for wildfire season

If you are in the Washington, DC area be sure to swing by the Georgetown Law Campus on March 20th for what will likely be an informative discussion amongst some of the best climate security thinkers (including CCS Advisory Board member, Sherri Goodman). Details for the discussion, “Threat-Multiplier: Exploring the National Security Law and Policy Implications of Climate Change,” are copied below.  (more…)

FEMA Comes to Norfolk for Flood Management Listening Session

The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) transits up the Elizabeth River as it passes the downtown Norfolk waterfront after completing a successful and on-time six-month Planned Incremental Availability at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, VA. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Tyler Folnsbee/Released)

The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) on the Elizabeth River, downtown Norfolk waterfront after completing a Planned Incremental Availability at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Tyler Folnsbee/Released)

By Michael Wu, Center for Climate & Security Policy Fellow

Today, representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) head to Norfolk, Virginia, to talk with locals about how to best protect the United States from the impacts of flooding. They’re coming to the right place. Norfolk is extremely vulnerable to sea level rise, recurrent floods, and volatile storms, all of which will be exacerbated by climate change. In fact, the entire Hampton Roads region has been rated the area most vulnerable to climate change on the entire eastern seaboard. (more…)

Climate Change in the 2015 World Wide Threat Assessment of the U.S. Intelligence Community

James_R._Clapper_official_portraitOn February 26, 2015, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper presented the World Wide Threat Assessment for the US Intelligence Community Statement for the Record to the Senate Armed Services Committee. A significant portion of the assessment highlighted risks associated with the impact of climate-exacerbated extreme weather events on global food and water security (see below for those excerpts). The assessment also looked at how climate change is a factor in increasing human security risks related to infectious diseases. (more…)

Open Comment & Listening Sessions: Federal Flood Risk Management Standard FEMA

Hampton Roads from space, by NASA/JPL

Hampton Roads from space, by NASA/JPL

Do you have an opinion on the new Executive Order 13690, Establishing a Federal Flood Risk Management Standard and a Process for Further Soliciting and Considering Stakeholder Input? If so, now is the time to submit a public comment or attend one of several listening sessions that will be held around the U.S. throughout the month of March. See the FEMA website and below for more background on Executive Order 13690 and the public comment and listening sessions. One of the listening sessions will be held in Norfolk, VA. For more on how climate change, sea level rise, flooding and military installations intersect see this Op-ed by CAPT Toll and RADM Titley on the climate threat to Hampton Roads(more…)

Center for Climate & Security Advisory Board Members on the National Security Strategy

SouthPorticoAdvisory Board members and staff of the Center for Climate and Security react to climate change listed as a “top strategic risk” in the Obama Administration’s National Security Strategy: (more…)