This post might have been titled: “How Many Five Star Generals Does it Take to Turn off the Light?” or “American Declares War on Climate Change”.
Perhaps when America’s military might turns its attention to the issue of climate change, we can expect its federal policy makers to sit up and listen attentively.
A report issued yesterday by the Alexandria, Va.-based, national security think-tank The CNA Corporation was written by six retired admirals and five retired generals. It warned that in the next 30 to 40 years there will be wars over water, increased hunger instability from worsening disease and rising sea levels and global warming-induced refugees. It further predicted that "The chaos that results can be an incubator of civil strife, genocide and the growth of terrorism.
The Generals, used to thinking strategically, highlight the interdependencies that multiply impacts of the increase in global temperatures. Here’s a section from the Executive Summary:
“Unlike most conventional security threats that involved a single entity acting in specific ways and points in time, climate change has the potential to result in multiple chronic conditions, occurring globally within the same time frame. Economic and environmental conditions in already fragile areas will further erode as food production declines, diseases increase, clean water becomes increasingly scarce, and large populations move in search of resources. Weakened and failing governments, with an already thin margin for survival, foster the conditions for internal conflicts, extremism and movement toward increased authoritarianism and radical ideologies”.
Some critics have suggested that the generals have exaggerrated the importance of such threats in the short run and that it will take more than 30 years for such interdependencies to manifest. But given that tourism is so dependent on the free movement of people and absence of political unrest, let alone terrorism, it's a thought provoking and sobering read and should be mandatory reading for demand forecasters and scenario planners, You can download it here. https://cna.org/