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Pentagon Prepares for Regional Effects of Climate Change

The Washington Post looks at a new Department of Defense report showing that “the locations in the world most prone to instability and bloodshed also are the ones where climate change has the greatest impact.”  

“In one specific example, U.S. European Command is preparing for more tourism and commerce in the Northern Sea Route, which runs through the Arctic along Russia’s northern coast, the report said. The document specifically mentions a planned trip next year by the cruise ship Crystal Serenity through the notorious Northwest Passage, which runs from the Pacific to the Atlantic oceans and has previously trapped ships in ice. Northern Command, which includes Canada and the United States, has similar concerns about increased traffic in the area, and the risks that will ensue.”  

“In the Middle East, U.S. Central Command has factored water scarcity into its campaign plans for the future. It also considers climate change when planning for humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and training alongside local militaries based in the region… In Africa, standing plans for humanitarian assistance and disaster relief will be expanded to encourage countries on the continent to prepare better for climate change.”  

“In the Pacific, the U.S. military is developing a visual display tool that will overlay historical data on disasters with information on climates, populations, geography and resource scarcity to help with planning. It also is concerned about the resilience of Hawaii and its installations there, and is looking for ways to improve it.”

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