2015 National Security Strategy Lists Climate Change as Major Threat

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President Obama’s newly released 2015 National Security Strategy lists climate change as a one of the “top strategic risks” to U.S. interests and an “urgent and growing threat to our national security” and putting the need to mobilize the international community “to meet the urgent challenges posed by climate change” on par with confronting infectious diseases, keeping nuclear materials from terrorists and preventing nuclear proliferation.

A subsection on the need to confront climate change notes that it contributes to natural disasters, increased sea levels and storm surges that “threaten coastal regions, infrastructure and property.” It says climate change also harms the global economy, which compounds “the growing costs of preparing and restoring infrastructure.”

The “concerted action [the nation is taking] to confront the dangers posed by climate change and to strengthen our national security” includes “partnering with states and local communities to better plan for, absorb, recover from and adapt to adverse events brought about by the compounding effects of climate change,” the report says 

A related White House fact sheet says the national will advance national security by “confronting the urgent crisis of climate change, including through national emissions reductions, international diplomacy and our commitment to the Green Climate Fund,” among other steps.


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