rom the latest e-mail Progress Report from the folks at the Center for American Progress Action Fund comes this depressing scenario.
Last month, the Military Advisory Board, a panel of esteemed retired military officers, issued a report that found “projected climate change poses a serious threat to America’s national security” over the next 30 to 40 years. The report — “National Security and the Threat of Climate Change” — warned that there will be wars over water, increased hunger, instability from worsening disease and rising sea levels, and global warming-induced refugees. “The chaos that results can be an incubator of civil strife, genocide and the growth of terrorism,” the report predicted.
Leading environmental scientists predict that climate change will bring about reduced access to fresh water, impaired food production, more diseases, land loss and displacement of major populations. “While the developed world will be far better equipped to deal with the effects of climate change, some of the poorest regions may be affected most. This gap can potentially provide an avenue for extremist ideologies and create conditions for terrorism.” The military experts said the fallout from global warming — massive migrations, increased border tensions, greater demands for rescue and evacuation efforts, and conflicts over essential resources, including food and water — could lead to direct U.S. military involvement. Ret. General Gordon Sullivan said, “We found that climate instability will lead to instability in geopolitics and impact American military operations around the world.” A “ferocious drought and famine” were the driving forces behind the crisis in Darfur, which is “likely to be seen as the first climate change war.”