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Key Message

No longer is climate change just an environmental problem or an energy challenge. In recent years, it has been recognized as a core development challenge that carries potentially serious implications for international peace and security.

Video


Alec Crawford - Climate Change and Conflict
(YouTube Video - 3:49 min)

Climate Change and Security

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In recent years, climate change has come to be viewed as a core development challenge that carries potentially serious implications for international peace and security.

Climate change will redraw our coastlines, alter where we can grow food, change where we can find water, expose us to fiercer storms or more severe droughts and likely force large numbers of people to move from their homelands. Climate change will undermine the economic and agricultural base of many countries, particularly the most vulnerable developing countries.

Meanwhile, warming temperatures are changing the strategic balance in the Arctic by opening up new shipping routes and uncovering the oil and gas supplies previously under the ice. Globally, climate change will stress existing mechanisms for sharing resources like transboundary rivers and migratory fish stocks. It is clear that climate change holds the potential to exacerbate existing tensions and even trigger new ones.

IISD's work tries to understand how climate change could affect political and economic stability and to develop effective ways to address those problems. It attempts to cut through the rhetoric with clear analysis of locations of concern, and hopes to add nuance, texture and detail to the debate on the security implications of climate change.

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