National Security & Climate Change

As stated by the Department of Defense in its Quadrennial Defense Review Report in February 2010, “climate change, energy security, and economic stability are inextricably linked.” The impacts of climate change are expected to act as a “threat multiplier” in many of the world’s most unstable regions, exacerbating droughts and other natural disasters as well as leading to food, water, and other resource shortages that may spur mass migrations. The primary driver of climate change—greenhouse gas emissions from the use of fossil fuels—is central to many of the U.S. military’s activities: the military is the world’s top consumer of energy, and many of its activities are dedicated to protecting fossil fuel supplies. Alternative, low-carbon sources of energy will not only reduce the impacts of climate change, but they will also lessen both the human and economic strain of U.S. military operations.

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