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Climate change may challenge national security, classified report warns
Date:6/25/2008

Secretary Robert Gates has approved a yet-unreleased National Defense Strategy that includes planning for environmental and climate problems.

Richard Engle, deputy national intelligence officer for science and technology in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, spoke of the classified report in a recent speech. " We wanted to get down to something that might be actionable for the policy community. So we had to be very specific," he said. The assessment was originally supposed to be public, but has been classified as confidential out of fears that it could evoke hostility from red-flagged governments, according to sources close to the process.

Thomas Fingar, chairman of the NIC, will publicly address some portions of the 58-page report, "National Security Implications of Global Climate Change Through 2030," at Wednesday's hearing. The key findings represent the consensus view of all 16 U.S. intelligence agencies.

Along with CIESIN, other sources whose data contributed to the assessment include the U.S. Climate Change Program; Center for Naval Analysis; the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; the Rand Corp.; and Arizona State University.

"There is clearly great interest among policy makers in knowing whether climate change will make crises such as the conflict in Darfur more prevalent, and whether other violent scenarios might be likely to unfold," said Levy. "The science of climate impacts does not yet give us a definitive answer to this question, but at least now we're looking at it seriously."


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Contact: Kevin Krajick
kkrajick@ei.columbia.edu
212-854-9729
The Earth Institute at Columbia University
Source:Eurekalert

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