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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Climate Change's Strategic Implications - US View

A report analyzing the security and strategic implications of global warming for US was released by CNA Corp, a NGO. The report was apparently put together by a group of 11 US admirals and generals, including Gen. Antony Zinni. While the damages highlighted in the report - climate change acting a threat multiplier for instability in some of the most volatile regions of the world - are fairly well known and obvious to the global warming debate followers, the recommendations about what to do about climate change are interesting:

  • The national security consequences of climate change should be fully integrated into national security and national defense strategies.

  • The U.S. should commit to a stronger national and international role to help stabilize climate changes at levels that will avoid significant disruption to global security and stability.

  • The U.S. should commit to global partnerships that help less developed nations build the capacity and resiliency to better manage climate impacts.

  • The Department of Defense should enhance its operational capability by accelerating the adoption of improved business processes and innovative technologies that result in improved U.S. combat power through energy efficiency.
I especially like the last recommendation! May be we'll get somewhere with renewable and clean technologies that will cost a few $10s millions, like those high-tech missiles and jet fighters, that only US DoD can afford. The current US president is likely to ignore the report. Maybe future presidents and others will find it useful. Because what a US report says, other take it at it's word, maybe others will start quoting, including the phrase "threat multiplier", from the report and make policy decisions based on recommendations contained in it.

Meanwhile Britain's Tony Blair's foreign minister called for UN Security Council action on climate change with US, China, and Russia expressing reservations. Finally, UNSC has something to do. Let the big five (apparently, including Britain and France) tell us what to do, and the rest of the world will follow. I am sure they know the rest of the world's, especially non-rich countries, predicament in adapting an expensive-energy life style.