There will be a lot of big headlines this week in the mainstream media as the United Nations’ IPCC releases its most recent report to the world about the state of the climate. A report that will claim with growing confidence how mankind is changing the climate for the worse.
One of the claims in the report will be that climate change will worsen global security problems and lead to more wars. An example of the type of scary headline to expect appears in today’s San Francisco Chronicle by AP Science Writer Seth Borenstein.
Sunday, March 30, 2014
…” In an authoritative report due out Monday a United Nations climate panel for the first time is connecting hotter global temperatures to hotter global tempers. Top scientists are saying that climate change will complicate and worsen existing global security problems, such as civil wars, strife between nations and refugees.”…
…the chapter on national security says there is “robust evidence” that “human security will be progressively threatened as climate changes.” It says it can destabilize the world in multiple ways by making it harder for people to make a living, increasing mass migrations, and making it harder for countries to keep control of their populations.”
Buried in the article is this comment recognizing the huge challenge the UN will face:
…”Poverty is the issue when it comes to security problems — and policies to fight climate change increase poverty, says David Kreutzer at the conservative Heritage Foundation in Washington.”
Meanwhile, the bigger worries and fights between nations will continue to be about energy. Those countries that have energy assets – oil, gas, uranium, etc., vs those that do not.
Michael Klare wrote about this presciently in his article at The Nation almost two years ago:
…”Conflict and intrigue over valuable energy supplies have been features of the international landscape for a long time. Major wars over oil have been fought every decade or so since World War I, and smaller engagements have erupted every few years…
… what we are now seeing is a whole cluster of oil-related clashes stretching across the globe, involving a dozen or so countries, with more popping up all the time. Consider these flash-points as signals that we are entering an era of intensified conflict over energy.
…The world has long been bifurcated between energy-surplus and energy-deficit states, with the former deriving enormous political and economic advantages from their privileged condition and the latter struggling mightily to escape their subordinate position.
Now, that bifurcation is looking more like a chasm. In such a global environment, friction and conflict over oil and gas reserves—leading to energy conflicts of all sorts—is only likely to increase.”
While the current U.S. administration appears beholden to the environmentalists to restrict development and delivery of energy supplies on its own soil, other countries look to find energy sources and distribution networks wherever they can get them. Just ask Putin.