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General Scaparotti and General Lyons Agree with Intelligence Assessments on Climate Change Threat

General Scaparrotti and General Lyons_3_5_2019

General Scaparrotti and General Lyons testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee on March 5, 2019

In a hearing yesterday before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Army General Curtis M. Scaparrotti, Commander of United States European Command and NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Europe, and Army General Stephen R. Lyons, Commander of United States Transportation Command, both agreed with the U.S. intelligence community’s assessment that climate change is a security threat. This is despite a current National Security Council attempt to impose a political test on that national security analysis, which was denounced yesterday by a group of 58 senior military, national security and intelligence leaders with experience across Republican and Democratic Administrations.

See a transcript of the exchange below (video here): (more…)

Army Assistant Secretary Nominee on Whether or Not Climate Change Affects the Military: “Absolutely.”

Alex Beehler

Alex Beehler, nominee for Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy, and Environment, before the Senate Armed Services Committee, August 22, 2018

On August 21, Alex Beehler, the nominee for Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy, and Environment, was asked by Rhode Island Senator Jack Reed during a confirmation hearing about whether or not he agreed with Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis’ s view that climate change affects the military mission. His response was unambiguous:

“Absolutely. Echoing what General McMahon just said, and if confirmed, from my position I will do everything to encourage installations and help direct installations to properly prepare on a case by case basis for both adverse weather and effects long-term from climate.” (more…)

Climate Security and the U.S. Pacific Command Posture: Strategic Long-term Challenges

Marines gather to listen to Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, speak aboard Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California. Photo by Lance Cpl. Christopher Johns

Marines gather to listen to Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, speak aboard Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California. Photo by Lance Cpl. Christopher Johns

On Thursday April 16, 2015, the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing on U.S. Pacific Command and U.S. Forces Korea. Witnesses included Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, III, USN Commander, U.S. Pacific Command. Admiral Locklear has been particularly concerned about the threat of climate change to the region, in the context of U.S. strategic interests (see here, here, here and here). Admiral Locklear’s written testimony for Thursday’s hearing reiterated those concerns. Below are excepts from Admiral Locklear’s testimony. The full testimony is available here, and a transcript of the hearing is available here. (more…)

Among DC Policymakers and Security Officials, All Eyes on Hampton Roads

Sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Mason (DDG 87) look on as the guided-missile frigate USS Nicholas (FFG 47) departs Naval Station Norfolk ahead of Hurricane Irene. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Aaron Chase/Released)

Sailors aboard the USS Mason (DDG 87) look on as the USS Nicholas (FFG 47) departs Naval Station Norfolk ahead of Hurricane Irene. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Aaron Chase/Released)

By Michael Wu, Policy Fellow, The Center for Climate and Security

“One area of immediate concern… is Hampton Roads.”– Judge Alice Hill, Senior Adviser for Preparedness and Resilience, National Security Council

Last week, students and faculty at Georgetown University Law Center held an event entitled, Threat Multiplier: Exploring the National Security Law and Policy Implications of Climate Change. The audience heard from a number of important members of the climate and security community. Notably, each of them mentioned Hampton Roads as a region that will present challenges and opportunities for United States national security and military readiness. (more…)

Senate Armed Services Committee Hearing on Climate Risks to Installations

Naval District Washington (NDW) officials present their smart grid pilot to John Conger  (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kiona Miller/Released)

Naval District Washington (NDW) officials present their smart grid pilot to John Conger (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kiona Miller/Released)

On March 11, 2015, the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing on “Military Construction, Environmental, Energy, and Base Closure Programs.” The testimony of John C. Conger, who is “performing the duties of Assistant Secretary of Defense Energy, Installations and Environment,” is worth particular notice, as it directly addresses climate risks to the Department of Defense’s mission, and outlines prudent steps DoD it taking to prepare for and mitigate those risks.  (more…)

Sec. Albright & Sec. Shultz On National Security, Climate Change & the Arctic

Kissinger_Shultz_Albright_Jan2015The U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) held an all-star hearing on January 29th, titled “Global Challenges and the U.S. National Security Strategy.” Witnesses included three former Secretaries of State: Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, Dr. George P. Shultz and Dr. Madeleine K. Albright. The entire hearing is worth watching, as it is full of sage advice from the former Secretaries of State.

Climate change – a “multiplier” of many of the national security threats described by the former Secretaries (and an added barrier to achieving U.S. strategic aims) – was explicitly addressed during the hearing. (more…)

Admiral Locklear’s Testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee

PACOM commander visits MCAS MiramarOn April 9th, Admiral Samuel Locklear III, Commander of U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM), gave testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee regarding the role of U.S. Pacific Command “in review of the defense authorization request for fiscal year 2014, and the Future Years Defense program.” In response to a question from Senator Inhofe regarding recent statements made by the Admiral on the security threat of climate change in the Asia-Pacific region, Admiral Locklear reaffirmed the importance of the issue from U.S.PACOM’s perspective. From page 10-11: (more…)