Global Warming a National Security Threat

Recently US Senators Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., and Dick Durbin, D-Ill., introduced a bill to create a National Intelligence Estimate on the national security implications of global warming. has the full story:

This is an interesting move to attempt to reframe the debate about global warming. Instead of its traditional place in environmental realm (read: tree-hugging hippie issue), we can see it now in terms of a security issue (read: soccer mom issue).

“For years, too many of us have viewed global warming as simply an environmental or economic issue,” [Durbin] said in introducing the new bill at a Senate hearing. “We now need to consider it as a security concern.” Durbin characterized climate change consequences as “a clear and present danger to the United States” and “a potential threat multiplier for instability around the world.”

Perhaps this will finally get some more of the officials in our government on board with the issue.

On a side note, this bill is a very interesting move for Sen. Chuck Hagel, as points out.

Hagel, a possible contender for the GOP presidential nomination, led the effort to block U.S. participation in the Kyoto treaty and continues to staunchly oppose mandatory restrictions on greenhouse gases, but he has been a leader among moderate Republicans in moving to address climate change in other, nonregulatory ways. “Sen. Durbin and I differ on policy initiatives designed to reduce the impact of climate change,” Hagel said at the hearing. “We do agree, however, on the need to assess potential impacts of the changing climate on U.S. national security interests.”

Maybe he can sway other government officials that have historically been against environmental concerns to think again.

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