Bipartisan report by the American Security Project

October 29, 2009 at 10:04 AM Leave a comment

The American Security Project, is an advisory group of high-powered Republicans and Democrats, who talked about how global warming “is

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Rising sea waters

not simply about saving polar bears or preserving beautiful mountain glaciers … (but) a threat to our security.” The group has on its board Republicans such as former Sen. Warren Rudman as well as Democrats including Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, the chief author of the Senate climate bill.

Across the globe there exist conflicts and security challenges including ethnic conflicts and emerging radicalism and often “these are also the parts of the world where we will see the most severe consequences from climate change,” Bernard Finel, a co-author of the American Security Project report, said in an interview. ” The intelligence community, CIA, (military) commanders, they’re all looking at these issues.”

Former Republican Sen. John Warner, a longtime chairman of the Armed Services Committee and a close ally of the military, has been touring the country to talk about climate change and national security.

“We are talking about energy insecurity, water and food shortages, and climate-driven social instability,” says Warner. “We ignore these threats at the peril of our national security and at great risk to those in uniform.”

Among the flash points:

  • Himalayan glaciers are likely to recede, producing fresh water shortages in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and parts of China.
  • Receding Arctic ice could trigger a territorial conflict involving Russia, the United States, Canada and others.
  • Sea level rise in Bangladesh, and drought in other parts of the world could unleash a flood of cross-border “climate refugees” and violence.
  • The Indian Ocean island of Diego Garcia, an atoll only a few feet above sea level, likely would disappear, taking away a critical U.S. military staging area.
  • Still these concerns are not unanimous.

    At Wednesday’s hearing, retired Army Major General Robert Scales, who said he had “deep reservations” about the science of climate change, worried that if fossil fuels were curtailed it would reduce the availability of diesel and jet fuel “that might reduce our ability to go to war.”

    On the prospects of global political and military instability from climate change, Scales said, “such unlikely events would cause enormous suffering and social dislocation. But the history record strongly suggests that such devastating humanitarian disasters rarely if ever result in large-scale wars.”

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    Entry filed under: Conservation, Energy, Green Help, National News. Tags: , .

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