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Release: Japan’s Economy is Exposed to Significant Security Risks from Climate Change, Experts Warn

Japanese Industry in an Unstable Climate_Cover_May 2019Climate Change Lessons From the US Military_For Japanese Industry_Cover_2019_5Tokyo, Japan, May 30, 2019 – Japan’s economic competitiveness is threatened by a heavy reliance on imports from countries that face multiple climate change-exacerbated security risks, and Japan can take lessons from the U.S. military’s vulnerabilities to climatic changes, according to two new Japan Series reports (here and here) from experts at The Center for Climate and Security, a think tank in Washington DC with a team and Advisory Board of senior military and security leaders. The reports come ahead of Japan’s hosting of two G20 ministerial meetings on Trade and Digital Economy (June 8-9) and Energy Transitions for Global Environment for Sustainable Growth (June 15-16). (more…)

Japan Continues its Leadership on Climate Change and Security

Japan Scenario_Nakane_2018_07_12

Kazuyuki Nakane, Japanese State Minister for Foreign Affairs, makes opening remarks at June 12, 2018 conference on climate change and fragility in Tokyo –  Photo by Climate Change Division of Japan’s Foreign Ministry. 

By Shiloh Fetzek, Senior Fellow for International Affairs

On July 12, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs held the “International conference on climate change and fragility in the Asia-Pacific region — Interlinkage among science, regional studies and business from the perspective of long-term climate risks” in Tokyo, which the Center for Climate and Security contributed to and participated in. The conference built on earlier Japanese leadership on climate security, stemming from its 2016 G7 presidency and leadership of the G7 Foreign Ministers’ Climate Fragility Working Group, which also resulted in a report on climate security issues in Southeast Asia and the Pacific presented at 2017 G7 meeting in Italy and last year’s COP.

The July event was aimed at taking the climate security discussion to the Japanese corporate and finance sectors, illustrating the long tail of risk to Japanese commercial interests in the Asia-Pacific. These include the climate vulnerability of concentrated manufacturing centers in Southeast Asia, as evidenced by the November 2011 floods in Thailand that disrupted supply chains for automotive and electronic components, resulting in a global shortage of hard drives. (more…)

Two Days of Climate and Security Action in the UN Security Council and Japan

Joint disaster drill

Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka port operations department sailors onboard USS Puyallup, simulate delivering food, clothing, first aid kits to Japanese disaster workers. US Navy Photo By Joseph Schmitt

By Shiloh Fetzek, Sherri Goodman and John Conger

Within 24 hours of each other, three significant security events will take place in New York, Brussels and Tokyo. On July 11/12, Sweden leads a debate in the UN Security Council on climate and security, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs convenes a major conference on the same subject, and the NATO Summit begins in Brussels.

Climate change will be front and center at the first two of these, but likely not as front and center at the third.

The UN Security Council debate on July 11 is the culmination of two years of effort by Sweden to mainstream climate change into the work of the UN Security Council, making it fit for purpose in a climate-shaped security environment. Sweden managed to catalyze action and create significant momentum during their two-year term as a nonpermanent member of the Council, momentum which is likely to bridge the transition to new non-permanent members in 2019 – particularly Germany and Belgium. This follows on the Arria Formula Dialogue last December and almost a decade worth of work to address climate security risks at the UN Security Council. (more…)

Japan, G7 and Climate Change and Fragility in the Asia-Pacific Region

Joint disaster drill

Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka port operations department sailors onboard USS Puyallup, simulate delivering food, clothing, first aid kits to Japanese disaster workers during 33rd annual Bosai Kunren. US Navy Photo By Joseph Schmitt

By Shiloh Fetzek and Heather Messera

The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) released a regional study in September on climate-related disaster vulnerability and socioeconomic and fragility risks in Asia-Pacific, articulating their view of climate change as one of the greatest threats to global security and economic prosperity.

The report, ‘Analysis and Proposal of Foreign Policies Regarding the Impact of Climate Change on Fragility in the Asia-Pacific Region – With focus on natural disasters in the Region’, is the product of a roundtable seminar, that included participation by the Center for Climate and Security’s (CCS) Shiloh Fetzek, and follow-up meetings hosted by Japan in connection with the G7 Working Group on Climate Change and Fragility. (more…)

G7 Workshop on Climate Change, Fragility and International Security in Tokyo

g7_secretary_kerry_sits_with_japanese_foreign_minister_kishida_and_his_counterparts_at_the_miyajima_island_26252716252

U.S. Secretary of State sits with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and his counterparts amid the G7 Ministerial Meetings. [State Department Photo/Public Domain]

By Stella Schaller, adelphi
This is a crosspost from Climate Diplomacy

On 19 January 2017, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan hosted a roundtable seminar with international experts and country representatives to follow up on G7 efforts to address climate-fragility risks.

Climate change is a ‘threat multiplier’ that will increase state fragility, fuel social unrest and potentially unleash violent conflict. Japan, as part of the Group of 7 (G7), has recognized the resulting challenges for sustainable economic development, peace and stability. Following up on the independent report “A New Climate for Peace: Taking Action on Climate and Fragility Risks” commissioned by G7 members, the foreign ministers of the G7, in April 2016, reiterated their commitment to take preventive steps and integrate climate-fragility considerations into their planning. (more…)

After the Elections: The Pacific Pivot and Climate Change Resilience

No matter how the U.S. Presidential election turned out, the decision by the U.S. national security establishment to refocus its attention on the Asia-Pacific region was likely to proceed apace.

Last week, Stars and Stripes reported on U.S. Army operation “Orient Shield,” and framed it in context of this strategic pivot: (more…)

CNA and Admiral Roughead on Resource Tensions in the East China Sea

Reuters’ Peter Apps posted an interesting piece yesterday on the rising tensions in the East China Sea, and elsewhere, over resources. Apps quotes the Center for Naval Analyses’ Eric Thompson at length: (more…)