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BRIEFER: Connecting Nuclear and Climate Policy in the Biden Administration

Over the past four years, the Council on Strategic Risks (CSR) has operated a working group to examine the convergence of two of the world’s greatest challenges: nuclear threats and climate change. Whether countries significantly expand reliance on nuclear energy to help address the climate crisis—or whether they pivot away from nuclear energy—either pathway will have a profound impact on future nuclear safety, security, and nonproliferation trends. The strength and contours of international political will to aggressively address the climate crisis will in turn shape nuclear trends. 

Read the briefer here.

VIDEO: Can Climate Change Undermine Nuclear Deterrence?

Some experts are concerned that tensions over water, territory, and other issues may increase nuclear detonation risks in regions like South Asia. An Indian Agni-II intermediate range ballistic missile on a road-mobile launcher, January 26, 2004. Antônio Milena (ABr)

By Natasha E. Bajema, Ph.D.

Maybe. It’s Complicated.

The Council on Strategic Risks (CSR) posed a series of questions about the Arctic region to four leading national security experts with different perspectives in a recent video interview below. Together, their diverse answers may help us to better understand the complex linkages across climate change, Arctic sea melt and new sea routes, prospects for conflict, competition, and cooperation within the global order, and new risks associated with nuclear weapons.

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RELEASE: Can Climate Change Increase the Risk of Nuclear Conflict?

The Council on Strategic Risks (CSR) Releases a Video Series Exploring the Complex Linkages Between Climate Change, Nuclear Energy, and Nuclear Weapons

Washington, D.C., October 28, 2020 —  A new video series from CSR’s Converging Risks Lab examines two of the gravest threats to global security today: nuclear detonation risks and climate change. One poses the potential for immediate catastrophe, the other, a perhaps slower but comparable destructive force. In the post-Cold War era, nuclear dangers and climate change present major existential risks to society, but their convergences are complex and require experts to navigate multiple silos of experience. Understanding the connections among climate and nuclear trends, and how they might interact with other security risks, is critical for national security and policy planners as well as the broader general public.

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BRIEFER: Brazil – A Climate, Nuclear, and Security Hotspot

By Andrea Rezzonico and Meggen Watt Petersen

Excerpt: This briefer, part of CSR’s series on hotspots experiencing unique combinations of climate, nuclear, and security challenges, examines Brazil’s nuclear developments, environmental challenges, climate change impacts, and socioeconomic landscape. The magnitude of Brazil’s geographic footprint, natural resources, and population helps define the nation as a global power. Yet a growing sense of agitation is rooted alongside the strengths: its pushback against global climate goals; a general public disconcerted by government corruption and increasingly authoritarian actions; a gnawing dissatisfaction with the handling of the pandemic; and a bold assertiveness to prioritize an expensive, indigenous nuclear-powered attack submarine while overlooking what are regarded as perhaps more pressing humanitarian needs. While the country is attempting to manage a multi-layered crisis, it could eventually sink beneath the convergences of these issues and become an alarming case study in what might occur if current institutions are not bolstered to address its growing security threats.

Read the full briefer here.

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