The Center for Climate & Security

Read, Watch, Listen: CCS Across the Web | June 2022

By Brigitte Hugh

Welcome to “Read, Watch, Listen” from the Center for Climate and Security (CCS), a monthly round-up highlighting some of the articles, interviews, and podcasts featuring the CCS network of experts.  

In June, CCS experts focused on the recently released “Climate Action 2030” from the Navy, and the NATO ministerial which took place in Madrid.

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Backgrounder: Climate Change and the National Defense Authorization Act

An often-overlooked area of bipartisan collaboration in Washington revolves around the security threat of climate change, with Republicans and Democrats agreeing on legislation to highlight and respond to the threat, and putting forward bills that have become law. More must be done to reduce the scale and scope of the threat, but as Congress develops the FY2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), it is worth looking back at the progress the United States has seen over the past several years, much of which aligns with the priorities described in the Climate Security Plan for America and the follow up report, Challenge Accepted.

In this backgrounder, we track key provisions that have been included in NDAAs from Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 through FY 2022, building from the initial, bipartisan declaration in 2017 that climate change was a direct threat to national security, to requirements for vulnerability assessments, resilience authorities, strategy requirements, and mainstreaming consideration of climate impacts on mission.

Renewed Urgency of Climate Security Action: Launch of the 2022 World Climate and Security Report Series

By Elsa Barron

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has set off a tsunami of global effects, including food, fuel, fertilizer, and finance crises, explained Dr. Patrick Verkooijen, CEO of the Global Center of Adaptation at the International Military Council on Climate and Security’s (IMCCS) 2022 World Climate and Security Report Series Launch

In the midst of these developing problems, NATO’s Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges Hon. David van Weel explains that, “Climate change is an ongoing challenge, if we fail to slow it down, the results may be similar to those we can see in wars—famine, loss of land and livelihoods, and migration.”

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Within the Health, Climate, and Security Nexus, Prevention is Better than a Cure

By Kelly Bridges

During the 2014-16 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, healthcare workers were contracting Ebola at an alarming rate. The World Health Organization (WHO) found that those fighting Ebola at the frontlines–in clinics and hospitals–were up to 32 times more likely to contract the disease than the rest of the population. Among the principal reasons why was the lack of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services in healthcare facilities, which rendered healthcare workers unable to wash their hands and disinfect surfaces. At the time, UNICEF reported that the demand for running water in Sierra Leonean healthcare facilities outstripped supply, as safely treating patients with Ebola requires 140 liters per day per patient. The most recent data from 2021 show that a staggering 80% of healthcare facilities in the West African country are without basic water services and less than 1% of its population has piped water at home. Globally, a quarter of all healthcare facilities are without basic water services and in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), which includes Sierra Leone and the Democratic Republic of the Congo–the latest country to fight an Ebola outbreak–this number grows to half of all healthcare facilities. Without access to WASH services in healthcare settings and in communities at-large, global health security cannot be achieved. 

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