Global Politics

Climate change and national security

Hillary Clinton addressed the top of the security challenges for the Obama administration�an economy that is reeling, a climate that is warming, and threats that are relentless. The new administration is clearly making climate change a plank in its national security platform. Many security experts say they're pleased to see the change. This researcher says climate change is a threat multiplier for instability in fragile regions of the world�as we have more extreme weather events, there will be more natural disasters, and more epidemics. This researcher says that causes forced migration or refugees and that's a problem we have to deal with. She says the indirect impacts of climate change can be severe. This professor says analyzing risk is more than looking at where potential environmental hazards exist. For example, while the Netherlands is highly exposed to rising sea levels, they have a strong and stable government. He compares that with places like Egypt which also has to deal with rising sea levels and has political instability problems and is surrounded by other countries with political stability. This researcher says energy, climate change, and security are all related: the more energy you have the less you need to import foreign energy. These big picture issues are being discussed at the conference in Poland this week. This researcher is there and says Obama gets the spirit of these issues. Here at home the Obama team is talking about a fourth link in the energy-environment-security chain: the U.S. economy. They're touting greenhouse gas industries to both create more jobs and make cuts in greenhouse gas emissions.

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