This SIPRI Insights presents a concise analysis of how three regional intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) in Europe with a security mandate — EU, OSCE and NATO — are responding to climate-related security risks. Together, these three IGOs are the main Europe-based regional organizations involved in European and international security.
Cape Town is dealing with one of the biggest climate change-linked water crises to face a modern city. This should serve as our wake-up call: we must transition to a new, shared way of organising around increasingly stretched resources, writes Leonie Joubert.
The traditionally unassuming role played by security organizations in climate deliberations is being turned upside-down. As climate threats undermine global security, military agencies and reactive bodies must look at climate change as more than just an environmental issue. We spoke to Jan Broeks, Director General of the International Military Staff at NATO, at the Planetary Security Conference 2017 about NATO’s role in this shifting paradigm.
Scholarly attention to the links between climate change and conflict has increased. But which places are analyzed most frequently by researchers, and what are the implications of their choices?
The “Environment, Conflict and Cooperation” (ECC) exhibition visualizes the dramatic and growing impact of global environmental change. It demonstrates how climate change can threaten the security of the American continent, and showcases how climate, environment and sustainable development cooperation can contribute to stability and peace.
The UN Security Council has identified climate change as a driver of conflict across West Africa and the Sahel, in a statement published last Tuesday.
The Vietnamese Mekong Delta is one of Earth’s most agriculturally productive regions and is of global importance for its exports of rice, shrimp, and fruit. The 18m inhabitants of this low-lying river delta are also some of the world’s most vulnerable to climate change. Over the last ten years around 1.7m people have migrated out of its vast expanse of fields, rivers and canals while only 700,000 have arrived.
Central Asian countries have long been competing over the water resources of the Syr Darya and Amu Darya river basins. Despite political commitment to cooperation, the policies of the five Central Asian republics – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan – have largely been driven by uncoordinated and partly contradicting national strategies. This focus on short-term national interests entails significant financial costs and major risks for the future development of the whole region.
The destruction caused by Cyclone Ockhi in South Asia portends what a ‘climate-changed’ world has in store for humankind, especially taking into consideration the adverse human security implications of such disasters that have to be addressed urgently. Dhanasree Jayaram argues that planetary security in this context can be best ensured at the regional level.
In November 2017, the U.S. government released its first ever Global Water Strategy – to our knowledge also the first of its kind globally. The opening page cites President Trump claiming that ‘[w]ater may be the most important issue we face for the next generation’. This priority may surprise observers of the current U.S. administration.
Conflicts over natural resources and the environment are among the greatest challenges in 21st century geopolitics. These conflicts present serious threats to human security at both the national and local levels.