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Ellen Laipson, the Stimson Center’s President and CEO, recently moderated a discussion with Hon. Sherri Goodman, Senior Vice President, CNA and Richard Cronin, Director of Stimson’s Southeast Asia Program, on the evolution of environmental issues as an increasingly important part of human and national security. Sherri Goodman’s account of her career in many ways parallels the evolution of the global security landscape. She started at the Senate Arms Services Committee with a focus on nuclear weapons and arms control during the Cold War, led the charge to broaden the definition of national security through her work as Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Environmental Security (1993-2001). As she describes the transition, she went “from weapons to waste.” She has continued to lead in advancing understanding of environmental security risks as Senior Vice President at CNA, where in 2007 she led the development of the Military Advisory Board’s groundbreaking report, “National Security and the Threat of Climate Change.” (more…)
Vice Admiral Lee Gunn, USN (Ret.) went to Texas on behalf of the Center for Naval Analyses’ Military Advisory Board to talk about climate change as a threat to national security. While in the Lone Star State, Admiral Gunn spoke with policymakers and energy leaders. He also made time to meet with Mose Buchele of StateImpact Texas for an interview to discuss the impacts of climate change on international security and military installations in Texas. Here is a part of the interview that looks at the overlapping stresses between governance, unrest, and climatic and ecological variables: (more…)
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. (more…)
Ohio’s Toledo Blade published an editorial this past Monday on “Climate and security” which highlights the National Research Council’s recently released report “Climate and Social Stress: Implications for Security Analysis,” which was commissioned by the CIA. The editorial stresses the need for policy-makers to act on climate change, emphasizing the implications of inaction for the U.S. military, and stability in vulnerable regions of the world. From the editorial:
The report warns military leaders to expect turmoil if abnormal climate patterns allow extremist groups to gain a stronger foothold in the parched Middle East, starved regions of Africa, and other historically unstable parts of the world.
Some military leaders, including a former head of Central Command, warn that the United States will “pay the price later in military terms” if it postpones action now.
The former head of Central Command that the editorial refers to is four-star General Anthony Zinni, USMC (Ret.), who made the comments in an influential report prepared by CNA’s Military Advisory Board titled “National Security and the Threat of Climate Change.”
In short, the U.S. military is taking climate change very seriously, and civilian policy-makers in the United States should follow suit.