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New Zealand Defence Leadership Meets with the Center for Climate and Security

New Zealand Roundtable 6

The New Zealand Defence Minister’s team meets with leadership of the Center for Climate and Security and the Council on Strategic Risks and the

On January 25, New Zealand’s Minister of Defence Ron Mark, and a team of senior defense leaders including the New Zealand Secretary of Defence and Chief of the Navy, met with the Center for Climate and Security’s and Council on Strategic Risks’ leadership to discuss the security and military implications of climate change, and what the United States and New Zealand can learn from each other. This was part of Defence Minister Ron Mark’s visit to Washington, DC that included meeting with his counterpart, U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper. See the press release here. Click here for more on recent climate security actions by the New Zealand Ministry of Defence, and here for equivalent information on the U.S. Department of Defense.

New Zealand Defence Releases Climate Change Implementation Plan

NZ Defence_Climate Crisis Report Cover_2019On December 8, 2019, the New Zealand Minister of Defence Hon. Ron Mark, with Minister for Climate Change Hon James Shaw, released a Climate Change Implementation Work Plan for its defence force, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan. The plan was co-produced by the New Zealand Ministry of Defence and the New Zealand Defence Force, and follows on the heels of the Defence Capability Plan released in June, which included the “Climate Crisis” as one of its key chapters. To read the full report, click here, and to read the press release, click here. A contact in the New Zealand Ministry of Defence sent along the following summary: (more…)

New Zealand Defence Plan Includes Entire Chapter on the Climate Crisis

New_Zealand Defence Force Staff Sergeant_ANZAC_Day_Ceremony_in_Port_Vila,_Vanuatu_1104

A New Zealand Defence Force staff sergeant stands at attention after laying a wreath in the water in honor of ANZAC Day during Pacific Partnership 2011 (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Michael Russell/Released)

In what is one of the most robust treatments of climate change in any current defense plan, the New Zealand Ministry of Defence’s Defense Capability Plan 2019, released on June 11, includes an entire chapter devoted to addressing climate change. The Plan, according to the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) website, “sets out the Government’s indicative planned investments in the New Zealand Defence Force” and “covers all capability investments out to 2030, and signals investments following 2030 that will be assessed through the next Defence White Paper in 2022.”

Chapter Five, titled “Responding to the Climate Crisis,” can be found on page 17, and refers back to last year’s “Climate Crisis: Defense Readiness and Responsibilities”  assessment from the New Zealand Ministry of Defence, which indicated a major increase in attention to the security risks of climate change from the Kiwi military. (more…)

New Zealand Military Releases Climate Change Assessment

New Zealand Ministry of Defense_Climate and Security AssessmentBy Shiloh Fetzek

New Zealand’s Ministry of Defence released a climate change and security assessment today, reemphasizing the conclusion from many defense establishments that climate change poses a significant threat to national and regional security. The assessment states that “Climate change will be one of the greatest security challenges for New Zealand Defence in the coming decades.”

Titled The Climate Crisis: Defence Readiness and Responsibilities, the report also cites geostrategic competition as a motivator for climate security cooperation in the Pacific, noting that, “Some states could look to use assistance in climate change disaster adaptation, mitigation, response, and recovery as a way to increase influence and access.” (more…)

Is Climate Change Driving a New South Pacific Security Architecture?

Sealift Solomon IslandsThis is a cross-post by Nicholas Burke from Relief Analysis Wire.

Last week, an inaugural meeting of South Pacific defense ministers took place in Tonga–an initiative spearheaded by Australia. Present were Tonga, Papua New Guinea, Australia, New Zealand, France, Chile, and (as an observer), the United States. Front and center on the agenda was collaboration on humanitarian and disaster relief operations, maritime surveillance, and plans to conduct joint exercises throughout the region. (more…)