Climate change, civil conflict, and violent extremism are among the most significant threats to global human development, peace, and security. UN-led plans to address all three require immediate action to prevent future crises, yet crucial investments may not yield tangible results for years to come—well beyond democratic term limits. Jonathan Rozen reflects on tensions between long-term planning and short-term action.
Lawmakers from nations in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization are warning that climate change will lead to conflict and mass migration in the Middle East and North Africa and are pressing governments to stick to their commitments under the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, notably pledges on climate financing for developing countries.
Resilience is a widely used concept among development, environmental, security and peacebuilding organisations. However, it has rarely been applied together with the concept of environmental security, despite the obvious ways in which the concepts complement each other. These concepts can be jointly applied in the peacebuilding sector. Environmental security sharpens the scope of resilience, while resilience allows for taking issues into account that a traditional environmental security perspective might miss.
Whilst a growing number of studies are appearing that analyse the statistical relationship between climate change and violent conflict, the implications for policy makers often remain unclear. In this article, Adrien Detges points out what quantitative analyses can tell us about climate change and conflict and highlights their limitations.
At the 2017 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development from 3 - 4 May, adelphi, in partnership with SIPRI and SEI, convened two sessions on climate change and fragility risks in the Lake Chad region, to discuss the different approaches and next steps for building resilience.
The epicenter of violence in the unstable country of Mali has historically been in the north, a contested region from where Touareg separatist and jihadist armed groups launched an insurgency against the state in 2012. But over the last two years, there has been a marked shift in communal and anti-state violence to the central region, and climate change may have played a role.
FAO warns that without urgent intervention, 20 million people will starve to death over the next six months in South Sudan, Somalia, north-eastern Nigeria and Yemen. UNICEF reports that 22 million children across these countries “are hungry, sick, displaced and out of school,” mainly because of conflict. Climate change and water insecurity are major challenges to ending hunger and achieving sustainable agriculture, outside of conflict, a primary driver.
The Indian military could be an instrumental player and leading force in India’s climate change strategy on domestic and international fronts. Dhanasree Jayaram analyses its traditional functions and newfound responsibilities towards the environment. The example of the Ecological Task Force, the world’s first ecological battalion, shows how the military could be involved in successful climate action.
As the climate changes, so too do the conditions in which non-state armed groups operate. The complex risks presented by conflicts, climate change and increasingly fragile geophysical and socio-political conditions can contribute to the emergence and growth of non-state armed groups. Our new report examines the links between climate-fragility risks and non-state armed groups.
Multiple stressors converge on the Lake Chad region. Unemployment, depleting resources, poverty and conflict interact with climate change. Prolonged severe droughts have contributed to a massive shrinking of Lake Chad, a main source of livelihood for millions of inhabitants. The resulting livelihood insecurity and extreme poverty has exacerbated tensions between pastoralists, farmers and fishers. This contributes to the increased risk of recruitment by non-state armed groups such as Boko Haram, engagement in illicit employment, armed conflict and major internal as well as cross-border displacement...
The German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel opened the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogues 2017 at the Federal Foreign Office, where close to 1,000 participants from 90 countries gathered to exchange on finding affordable alternatives to coal and gas. In his keynote, Foreign Minister Gabriel stressed the conflict dimension of climate change and energy security, and urged the international community to join forces in shaping the global Energiewende.
This week, newly minted Secretary of Defense James Mattis j
James Mattis’ unpublished testimony before a Senate panel recognizes a threat others in the administration reject or minimize.
Everyone recognises the importance of environmental mainstreaming. It’s a problem that is particularly acute for conflict and the environment, where the environment is rarely prioritised before, during or after conflicts. In turn this influences how we frame the issues we work on, and it also influences how we work, often content with modest progress from one project to the next. The barriers we face are systemic, which begs the question – do we need to change the system?