Showing posts with label Climate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Climate. Show all posts

8 July 2018

Climate Change And Urbanization: Challenges To Global Security And Stability – Analysis

By Ronak B. Patel and David P. Polatty IV*

Two global trends that present monumental new challenges for civil-military coordination in humanitarian crises are urbanization—the growth of cities across the world—and climate change. The following article explains how these two trends and their interactive effects will increasingly complicate and test civil-military coordination in humanitarian crises. Each trend individually intensifies the risk for crises and makes responses remarkably more complicated. The manner in which these two trends interact to drive and escalate further crises is also becoming clearer. The humanitarian community has begun to address these challenges in its operations by debating their impact on coordination and thinking through potential actions that can facilitate more resilient approaches to crisis preparedness. Militaries, increasingly engaged in supporting humanitarian missions in both natural disaster and conflict settings, face a rapidly changing environment. Civil-military coordination in these crises must be re-examined, and militaries must adapt to this shifting landscape in order to operate effectively with humanitarian actors.
Climate Change and Cities

5 July 2018


Spencer Phillips


The National Security Strategy (NSS) of the United States released by the White House in December 2017 was a sharp departure from the idealism of other recent administrations. In recognition of the realities of a highly competitive world, and to ensure its continued standing in the world, the U.S. would now be more willing to use its political, economic, and military power to confront potential rivals. This strategy strongly focuses on the dangers posed by traditional state actors and violent extremist organizations, and the tools they may use to threaten U.S. security interests.[1] While the dangers posed by hostile nation states, weapons of mass destruction, drones, and cyber weapons are significant enough to justify a robust U.S. response, the current strategy completely omits other equally urgent security threats. Neither the NSS nor the Defense Department’s National Defense Strategy (NDS) make any mention of the risks associated with global climate change, to include the widespread instability and conflict that it is likely to cause in the coming decades.

30 June 2018

** Warming World Why Climate Change Matters More Than Anything Else

By Joshua Busby

The world seems to be in a state of permanent crisis. The liberal international order is besieged from within and without. Democracy is in decline. A lackluster economic recovery has failed to significantly raise incomes for most people in the West. A rising China is threatening U.S. dominance, and resurgent international tensions are increasing the risk of a catastrophic war. Yet there is one threat that is as likely as any of these to define this century: climate change. The disruption to the earth’s climate will ultimately command more attention and resources and have a greater influence on the global economy and international relations than other forces visible in the world today. Climate change will cease to be a faraway threat and become one whose effects require immediate action.

14 June 2018

5 Things You Need To Know About The IMF And Climate Change

by Ian Parry

The world is getting hotter, resulting in rising sea levels, more extreme weather like hurricanes, droughts, and floods, as well as other risks to the global climate like the irreversible collapsing of ice sheets. Here are five ways the IMF helps countries move forward with their strategies as part of their commitment to the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change. 

25 April 2018

The dark side of solar

Varun Sivaram

This paper is second in a series from the Cross-Brookings Initiative on Energy and Climate. An excerpt from the paper's introduction follows. Additional papers in the series will be forthcoming throughout 2018. View the full series hereIn recent years, solar power has surged to become the cheapest and fastest-growing source of electricity on the planet. Over the last decade, solar installations have grown annually by over 30 percent on average, thanks to costs that have plunged more than 90 percent. This red-hot growth suggests that in the near future, solar power could challenge fossil fuel dominance and help the world reduce its carbon emissions. As a result, solar has become the poster child of a putative clean energy revolution.

Making Water-Smart Energy Choices


Just as the accumulation of carbon in the atmosphere contributes to climate change, so does the degradation and depletion of water resources. If the world does not adopt a more holistic approach that recognizes this reality, it will be impossible to save the planet. Climate change undoubtedly poses a potent – even existential – threat to the planet. But the current approach to mitigating it, which reflects a single-minded focus on cutting carbon dioxide emissions, may end up doing serious harm, as it fails to account for the energy sector’s depletion of water resources – another major contributor to climate change.

4 April 2018

Climate Conflicts: Myth or Reality?

By Hayley Stevenson

The specter of water wars has long loomed large in political and popular imaginations. With the end of the Cold War, fresh concerns emerged that future wars would be fought not over ideology but over natural resources. The alliteratively appealing phrase of “water wars” began rolling off the tongue as United Nations leaders and politicians made bold claims about the inevitable carnage that resource scarcity would bring. Climate change heightens these concerns as the gap widens between what science tells us is necessary and what politics tells us is feasible.

27 March 2018

Climate Conflicts: Myth or Reality?

By Hayley Stevenson

The specter of water wars has long loomed large in political and popular imaginations. With the end of the Cold War, fresh concerns emerged that future wars would be fought not over ideology but over natural resources. The alliteratively appealing phrase of “water wars” began rolling off the tongue as United Nations leaders and politicians made bold claims about the inevitable carnage that resource scarcity would bring. Climate change heightens these concerns as the gap widens between what science tells us is necessary and what politics tells us is feasible.

13 February 2018

The Two-Degree Delusion The Dangers of an Unrealistic Climate Change Target

By Ted Nordhaus

Global carbon emissions rose again in 2017, disappointing hopes that the previous three years of near zero growth marked an inflection point in the fight against climate change. Advocates of renewable energy had attributed flat emissions to the falling cost of solar panels. Energy efficiency devotees had seen in the pause proof that economic activity had been decoupled from energy consumption. Advocates of fossil fuel divestment had posited that the carbon bubble had finally burst.

22 January 2018

Climate-driven Migration in Africa

By Stefano Torelli

Europe is underestimating the primary cause of migration from sub-Saharan Africa: climate change. Environmental changes have a particularly pronounced impact on migration from Africa for at least four reasons: the continent is highly dependent on natural resources and agriculture, which are the first assets to be undermined by climate change; it has poor infrastructure, such as flood defences; its states are often characterized by weak institutions, which are less able to adapt to climate change; and its high poverty rate undermines the resilience of local populations to climate shocks.

14 January 2018

America's Most Pressing Threat? Climate Change

James Stavridis

When the newest U.S. National Security Strategy was released last month, many intelligence, military and foreign-policy professionals considered it a pleasant surprise. It hits most of the mainstream concerns facing the U.S.: the significant challenges we face from China, Russia, North Korea and Iran; the necessity of better homeland security against terrorist attacks; the importance of working with allies, partners and friends; and the need to determine sensible levels of defense spending. I called it “shockingly normal” in a But it misses the mark in one particularly worrisome area: the threats related to climate change and global warming, which were all but ignored. Early reports indicate that a similar report expected to soon be released by the Pentagon, the National Defense Strategy, will make the same error of omission.

27 November 2017

Climate Change Will Bring More Frequent Natural Disasters Weigh On Economic Growth

The weather seems to be getting wilder and fiercer. From devastating hurricanes in the U.S. and the Caribbean, to raging wildfires in California and ruinous floods in India, the human and economic toll of extreme weather events is enormous.

Each time an extreme weather event causes significant loss of property and loss of life, a natural disaster is recorded. Natural disasters are a particularly important risk to small, lower income countriesbecause they can quickly wipe out a significant portion of their GDP. For decades, the IMF has been committed to helping meet member’s post-disaster needs. Will these needs increase with climate change? In other words, will climate change bring more frequent weather-related natural disasters? Based on our analysis in Chapter 3 of the October 2017 World Economic Outlook, the answer is yes.

23 November 2017

Why Meeting The Paris Climate Goals Is An Existential Threat To Fossil Fuel Industries

by Henry Kelly

Any program with a reasonable chance of meeting the goals embraced by the 2016 Paris accords (holding global temperature increases below 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius compared to preindustrial levels) is likely to mean drastic changes in fossil energy markets. And the task is only getting harder. After three years of leveling off, global greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels are projected to grow 2 percent in 2017 to a new record high.

22 November 2017

Roger Pielke Jr. describes the decay of climate science

Welcome to issue #7 of my occasional newsletter on climate and energy issues. As a reminder, my day-to-day research or writing is focused on sports governance and various issues of science policy. But I’ve written a fair bit on the topics of climate and energy over the past 25 years, including two recent books and a boatload of academic papers, and I’m paying attention. So caveat lector {reader beware}! …
Mertonian Norms and Climate Debates.

Working Group on Climate, Nuclear, and Security Affairs: Report One

A First-of-its Kind Framework for Managing the Intersection of Climate Change and Nuclear Security

In its initial report released on November 15, 2017, the Working Group on Climate, Nuclear, and Security Affairs (CNSA), chaired by the Center for Climate and Security, articulates a first-of-its kind framework for understanding and addressing the complex connections between climate change, security, and nuclear issues.

Countries such as Nigeria, Jordan, Bangladesh, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia are dealing with numerous internal climatic, economic, security, demographic, and environmental pressures as they pursue nuclear energy. The report notes the importance of such countries in terms of how these issues might influence one another—and raises concerns that Russia may be a dominant nuclear supplier to such countries.

21 November 2017

Climate Policy after Paris: Inconvenient Truths

By Severin Fischer for Center for Security Studies (CSS)

The 2015 Paris Agreement fundamentally realigned the structures of international climate policy. However, a large gap remains between what voluntary national plans can achieve and the emissions reductions needed to stay in line with the Paris targets, and it doesn’t look like that chasm is going to close anytime soon. That’s why Severin Fischer believes we will have to rely on climate engineering technologies if we hope to keep our climate goals and politics properly aligned.

14 November 2017

A War Plan Orange For Climate Change

Hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Harold Stark promulgated his guidance through a famous cable: “EXECUTE AGAINST JAPAN UNRESTRICTED AIR AND SUBMARINE WARFARE.” Although the attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise, the idea of war with Japan was not. The war in the Pacific was guided by War Plan Orange, a secret strategy the U.S. military had been developing, refining, and updating since 1906.

11 October 2017

Are Catastrophic Disasters Striking More Often?

by Jay L. Zagorsky

No sooner had Hurricane Harvey’s record rains receded from Houston and neighboring cities than the residents of Florida began bracing for a wallop from an even more powerful storm. Following that another category five hurricane, Maria, ravaged the Carribean. And hurricane season hadn’t even peaked yet.

27 September 2017

Climate Risks Grow For Emerging Asia If U.S. Exits Paris Accord

by Dan Steinbock, Difference Group

If America does withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, emerging Asia will pay the highest price.

As I left Manila recently, tropical storm Isang passed the Batanes area in northern Philippines. When I flew to Guangzhou, the low-pressure area morphed into a tropical depression southeast to Taiwan and then into a typhoon in the South China Sea. On August 23, Hato’s eye was directly over Hong Kong as rapid intensification turned it into a category 3-equivalent typhoon. Days later, Hato had left behind 26 people killed, and damages amounting to $1.9 billion in mainland China.

12 September 2017

This is how your world could end

Peter Brannen

Many of us share some dim apprehension that the world is flying out of control, that the centre cannot hold. Raging wildfires, once-in-1,000-years storms and lethal heatwaves have become fixtures of the evening news – and all this after the planet has warmed by less than 1C above preindustrial temperatures. But here’s where it gets really scary.

If humanity burns through all its fossil fuel reserves, there is the potential to warm the planet by as much as 18C and raise sea levels by hundreds of feet. This is a warming spike of an even greater magnitude than that so far measured for the end-Permian mass extinction. If the worst-case scenarios come to pass, today’s modestly menacing ocean-climate system will seem quaint. Even warming to one-fourth of that amount would create a planet that would have nothing to do with the one on which humans evolved or on which civilisation has been built. The last time it was 4C warmer there was no ice at either pole and sea level was 80 metres higher than it is today.

The modern world will be much more of a killing fieldMatthew Huber, paleoclimatologist

I met University of New Hampshire paleoclimatologist Matthew Huber at a diner near his campus in Durham, New Hampshire. Huber has spent a sizable portion of his research career studying the hothouse of the early mammals and he thinks that in the coming centuries we might be heading back to the Eocene climate of 50 million years ago, when there were Alaskan palm trees and alligators splashed in the Arctic Circle.