Climate Change And Environmental Security

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Climate Change And Environmental Security

  1. 1. Climate Change and Environmental Security: Bringing Realism Back In Josh Gellers PhD Student, Political Science University of California, Irvine Photo: A. Ishokon (UNEP)
  2. 2. Themes <ul><li>1) Reconcile realism with environmental security </li></ul><ul><li>2) Develop theoretical basis for designating climate change as a security issue </li></ul><ul><li>3) Encourage reconceptualization and condensation of “environmental security” </li></ul>
  3. 3. Research Question <ul><li>Question: Is realism incompatible with environmental security? </li></ul><ul><li>Argument: Realism can accommodate environmental security by expanding causal linkages </li></ul>Conflict Civil Unrest Economic Downturn Reduced Crop Yield Climate Change
  4. 4. Conceptual Underpinnings <ul><li>“ Redefining Security” or “Securitizing the Environment” </li></ul><ul><li>1) Political Economy of the Environment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mathews (1989), Kahl (2005) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2) Resource Scarcity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Homer-Dixon (1994), Maxwell & Reuveny (2000) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>3) Human Security </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ogata & Cels (2003), Paris (2001) </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Existing Typologies <ul><li>Direct v. Indirect Threats (Levy 1995) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Direct: Skin cancer from ozone depletion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Indirect: Global biodiversity loss </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Territorial v. Extraterritorial Risks (Busby 2008) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Territorial: Climate change-induced drought </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Extraterritorial: Sea level rise overtaking foreign military installations </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Realist Applications <ul><li>1) Political Economy of the Environment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: Climate change affects agricultural output </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defensive realism </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2) Resource Scarcity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: Climate change causes water shortage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offensive realism </li></ul></ul><ul><li>3) Human Security </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: Climate change-induced sea level rise creates environmental refugees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defensive and offensive realism </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Research Directions <ul><li>Develop a comprehensive policy approach to conceptualizing environment-security relationship </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Example: Drought in West Africa Caused by Climate Change and Its U.S. Impacts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Direct v. Indirect: Indirect </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Territorial v. Extraterritorial: Extraterritorial </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Source of Threat: Foreign Destabilization </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Threat Severity: Low/Medium </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Threat Imminence: Likely (20-year time horizon) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sectors/Groups Impacted: Farmers, Agriculture, Government </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Mitigating Resources: Foreign Assistance (USAID) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Environmental Linkage: Drought  Refugees  Political Stress in Nearby State  Institutional Destabilization  Terrorist Group Opportunism  Increased Terrorist Activities </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Research Directions <ul><li>Disentangle current categorizations </li></ul>= Human Security Environmental Security
  9. 9. Questions?

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