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Global Warning: The Security Challenges of Climate Change

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Abstract:

During the course of the past year, a high-level working group of foreign policy experts, climate scientists, historians, and other specialists has met regularly to investigate the national security and foreign policy implications of climate change. Many of the key findings of this task force, which was directed by the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the Center for a New American Security, are presented in a new report entitled “The Age of Consequences.”

“The Age of Consequences” is organized around three possible climate change scenarios that were developed by Pew Center Senior Climate Scientist Dr. Jay Gulledge in consultation with other leading experts in the field. Our chapter, presented here in its complete, unabridged form, analyzes the foreign policy and national security implications of the most moderate of these scenarios over a 30-year timeframe. We identify the critical challenges created or exacerbated by climate change that the United States and the international community will confront.