3–4, 2011). 13. Lorenzo Cotula, ‘The International Political Economy of the Global Land Rush: A Critical Appraisal of Trends, Scale, Geography and Drivers’, Journal of Peasant Studies (Vol. The crucial international financial mechanism is the United Nations Clean Development Mechanism: , accessed 14 May 2013. Focusing only on the ‘sink’ aspects of ecosystems and imposing rules and regulations from afar is not likely to be a process that works smoothly.42 Insofar as these new patterns of rural transformation also dislocate rural economies and speed up rural migration to the burgeoning conurbations of the South, Northern mitigation measures may serve to aggravate rural conditions in Southern states. This is echoed by Duffield and Waddel (2006), who have pointed out the existence of two discourses. Hence these appeals can be considered as proper securitization rather than failed securitizing moves.9 The securitization of climate change has avoided the identification of enemies and has involved actors other than states, both in the securitizing moves and in the security provisions. 1, 2009). 14. 25. The first—the reliance on emergency measures—suggests that it is impossible to be prepared for all potential threats and it is preferable to deal with emergencies as they occur; the second—the development of preventive ones—warns of potential catastrophic impacts. The dilemma then becomes one of whether the existing structures should be changed voluntarily or whether it is preferable to wait until ‘structural change will be enforced violently and randomly by environmental crises’ (595). Instead, climate change is only one aspect of a larger human-made environmental change. 12, No. 1, 2012). Nick Mabey, Jay Gulledge, Bernard Finel and Katherine Silverthorne, Degrees of Risk: Defining a Risk Management Framework for Climate Security (London: E3G, 2011). Events that had traditionally been considered as natural disasters were increasingly associated with the growing instability of climate. Central to the agreement was the recognition that energy and environment should go hand in hand. Royal Society, Geoengineering the Climate: Science, Governance and Uncertainty (London: Royal Society, 2009); Bipartisan Policy Center, ‘Geoengineering: A National Strategic Plan for Research on the Potential Effectiveness, Feasibility, and Consequences of Climate Remediation Technologies’, Bipartisan Policy Center, Washington DC, 2011. Derek Hall, Land (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2013). Besides, there are limited multilateral institutions that deal with energy security, resulting in the higher risks of fostering a zero-sum mentality and an antagonistic attitude which can be problematic in dealing with climate issues. At the very least, it will constitute an option for those countries whose industrial capabilities permit them to attempt to adjust the climate and either reduce the frequency and scale of extreme events or provide more conducive local conditions. In this article, Simon Dalby argues that this requires consideration of three themes in particular: urban vulnerabilities to extreme events; the unforeseen social and political consequences of adaptation and mitigation efforts; and the possibilities of geo-engineering. David Humphreys, ‘Smoke and Mirrors: Some Reflections on the Science and Politics of Geoengineering’, Journal of Environment and Development (Vol. People also read lists articles that other readers of this article have read. Alan Robock and Owen Brian Toon, ‘Local Nuclear War, Global Suffering’, Scientific American (Vol. The impact of this strategy is evident in the reaction to the Ukrainian gas crisis in 2006. There are no institutions that can make such decisions, at least not yet. See, for instance, the co-operative effort between corporations and Oxfam America in the Partnership for Resilience and Environmental Preparedness (PREP), ‘Value Chain Climate Resilience: A Guide to Managing Climate Impacts in Companies and Communities’, July 2012, , accessed 14 May 2013. Beck is suggesting that contemporary threats are beyond insurability and ‘[m]aybe the time has come to work towards the prevention of disorder and catastrophe, and not merely towards their control. Duffield and Waddell argued that: ‘[h]ow conflict has been understood in the post-Cold War period is central to understanding the concept of “security” within human security’ (2006, 43).8 Human security shifted the focus of security from the state to the individual and ‘the legitimate concerns of ordinary people who sought security in their daily life’ (United Nations Development Programme [UNDP] 1994, 22). The project identified a number of ‘syndromes’—sets of complex, pathological relationships between environmental and other social, demographical and political factors—that might help monitoring problematic situations and providing early warning systems for potential conflicts. The discussion of the Anthropocene makes it very clear that appeals to a universal humanity, which used to be dismissed by realists as idealist wishful thinking, now have to be taken seriously as the context for security thinking. As the failures of mitigation have become more apparent, attention has increasingly shifted to matters of climate adaptation, often in such important but banal matters as building bridges higher in anticipation of increased sea levels or larger floods.32 Yet critics warn that unless more attention is paid to the social and political dimensions of adaptation, these measures are more likely to cause conflict than prevent it.33 If the assumption that adaptation is necessarily a good thing is disregarded, its potential dangers are easier to see, especially when considering the global dimensions of the current transformation of the planet. 58. 3, 2011); John O'Loughlin et al., ‘Climate Variability and Conflict Risk in East Africa 1990–2009’, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Vol. Jessica Mathews, ‘Redefining Security’, Foreign Affairs (Vol. By closing this message, you are consenting to our use of cookies. While discussions of geo-engineering have been underway for decades, until recently most climate activists and state policy-makers have not wished to engage in them.43 There are a number of good reasons for this, not least the moral hazard argument – namely, the fear that if research into the matter generates apparently affordable and plausible suggestions as to how to control the climate, then the urgency of the need to deal with greenhouse gas emissions will dissipate and policy initiatives to enhance solar-energy replacements for fossil fuels will not come to fruition quickly enough. Climate change poses a considerable threat to global food security, with potentially existential economic, political, and social outcomes for humanity. For instance, at the United Nations General Assembly in December 1988, Gorbachev stressed: ‘The relationship between man and the environment has become menacing … [t]he threat from the sky is no longer missiles but global warming’ (quoted in Norman Myers 1993, 11). Buzan emphasized that ‘[e]nvironmental security concerns the maintenance of the local and the planetary biosphere as the essential support system on which all other human enterprises depend’ (1991, 19–20). Given the delays in setting economies on this path, however, it may well be that directly adjusting the earth's temperature may, through geo-engineering, be attempted in the not-too-distant future. While in 1992 Hurricane Andrew caused billions of dollars of losses to Florida, it caused many fewer deaths than the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926. Security is about survival, urgency and emergency. 2 This is the argument of critical security studies. Severe droughts, damaging floods and mass migration: Climate change is becoming a focal point for security and conflict research and a challenge for the world’s governance structures. Serious discussion of global environmental security must consider the interconnected nature of the world, especially as ecological research shows that human society is in the process of dramatically changing how the earth system operates. The word security entails a specific logic or rationality, independent of the context or the intentions of the speakers. In part, this was simply because of a lack of effective warning systems: weather satellites are a relatively recent innovation, and emergency services are now much more effective than in the past, even if they are frequently improvised at short notice. The first major formulation of the concept appeared in the UNDP 1994 annual report, which identified environmental security, together with economic, food, health, personal, community and political security as a relevant component of human security and stressed the ‘all-encompassing’ and ‘integrative’ qualities of the concept (24). The sheer scale of land-use changes, loss of biodiversity, decline in fish stocks, growing greenhouse gas concentrations, the re-routing of rivers, mining of numerous minerals, covering over of land by concrete and asphalt, and many other transformations have changed the planet's surface so drastically that humanity has in effect become a new force shaping the planet's basic physical systems.11 What matters now with regard to the long-term discussion of environmental security is not whether rural squabbles over supposedly scarce resources spill over into larger conflicts, but rather how these new circumstances emerging as a consequence of human activity impact upon both populations and states. Where, how and when we grow food is vitally connected to our climate's normal patterns. She was one of the first to employ the term ‘climate security’ (Beckett 2006). See John Vidal, ‘Indian Investors are Forcing Ethiopians off Their Land’, Guardian, 7 February 2013. Even if this logic is still relevant, the analysis of environmental security discourses and the securitization of climate change have shown that transforming an issue like climate change into a security issue is not about applying a fixed meaning of security and the practices associated with it. The infrastructures that allow modern economies to function stretch right around the globe in the form of trade routes and commodity chains; some corporations are already planning to reduce vulnerabilities to climate change precisely by rethinking their supply networks.56. In this way, as Lacy (2005) has outlined, realists tend to create a hierarchy of threats, distinguishing between threats that can be legitimately included in the security agenda and those that cannot.4. Environment as an external facet of human life is in this sense a thing of the past, having been replaced by the current Anthropocene era.50 In turn, this again poses the question of what kind of an Earth the industrialised part of humanity is constructing for future generations – and, crucially, who decides what must be secured for this future and what happens if powerful actors, states or corporations fundamentally disagree about who should make such decisions and how they should be enforced. This kind of securitization is also evident in the concern expressed by some developing countries, which argued against the imposition of policies aimed at forcing them to reduce their emissions since these policies can threaten their development process. This problematic development has been described as ‘securitization’. While droughts and floods – the product of either too little or too much rain – have lately received much media and governmental attention, recent media discussions have concentrated first and foremost on hurricanes. Tropical fruit and vegetables, just like luxury items, are flown all over the world daily. This discourse relies on more sophisticated techniques to try to insure even catastrophic risk by shifting it to the capital market. Gunther Baechler, ‘Why Environmental Transformation Causes Violence: A Synthesis’, Environmental Change and Security Project Report (Vol. Firstly, this debate has legitimized new actors and instruments to develop forms of security governance, which downplay the role of the state and of traditional reactive responses. The Convention on Biological Diversity is also used in arguments against geo-engineering. 7421, 25 October 2012). More pertinently, conflicts were seen as part of the dynamic that draws groups together rather than a disturbance of an otherwise stable society. The academic discussion was largely shaped by the work of Thomas Homer-Dixon and a series of well-funded research projects, which aimed to study the relationships between environmental degradation and violent conflicts (Homer-Dixon 1991, 1994). 28. In this context, Beck's analysis of risk society has been used as ‘a means to conceptualise and understand the transformation of Western security policies’ (Rasmussen 2001, 285). Securitization, as de Wilde has argued, ‘triggers two debates: one about the underlying risk assessment, one about the strategic answer to it’ (2008, 596). Others welcomed the concept since it ‘plays down the values traditionally associated with the nation-state—identity, territoriality, sovereignty—and implies a different set of values associated with environmental change—ecology, globality, and governance’ (Dyer 2001, 68). Despite the initial momentum and the broad scope of environmental security discourses, the debate was captured by discussions about environmentally induced conflicts. One of the biggest risks posed by climate change is the potential for massive population displacement. Register to receive personalised research and resources by email, https://doi.org/10.1080/03071847.2013.807583, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9000.doc.htm, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2011/sc10332.doc.htm, http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgemissions/global.html, http://www.oxfamamerica.org/publications/prep-value-chain-climateresilience/?searchterm=Value%20Chain. Even if the School tends to dismiss these as failed securitizations, this seems to show that the transformation of an issue into a security issue can follow different modalities and different logics, which eschew the confrontational logic of the national security model suggested by the School. He is the author of Environmental Security (University of Minnesota Press, 2002) and Security and Environmental Change (Polity 2009), and co-editor of The Geopolitics Reader (Routledge, 2006). The Climate and Security Advisory Group (CSAG): “A Climate Security Plan for America: A Presidential Plan for Combating the Security Risks of Climate Change” . These new threats suggested the need to redefine the nature of security in an interdependent world facing new challenges. While assumptions of scarcity as a cause of conflict were widespread, what was notable in the early 1990s was the lack of clear social-scientific evidence that this was the case.4 Neither was it obvious that environmental changes would necessarily lead to forms of conflict that could be easily understood in terms of threats to either national or global security. The possibility of transforming into a threat something that has not yet materialized and allowing it to bring about the practices suggested by the Copenhagen School in the case of securitization presents a grim perspective. United Nations, Convention on the Prohibition of Military or Any Other Hostile Use of Environmental Modification Techniques (ENMOD). Climate change is particularly insidious because it often acts as a threat multiplier, interacting with other factors like disease, food security, water security and poverty. Mark Pelling, Adaptation to Climate Change: From Resilience to Transformation (London: Routledge, 2011). Failure to keep the planetary system below the widely accepted 2°C ‘guardrail’ of the safe range of climate change – formally adopted at the Copenhagen climate summit in 2009 – means that humanity is entering a period of what is described by climate scientists simply as ‘very dangerous climate change’.24. The first emphasizes the importance of circulation—it suggests that disasters or conflict in one region have the ability, through population displacement to affect other regions and countries. Nonetheless, most migration that can be plausibly related to climate change occurs, at least so far, mostly within states.15. Climate change poses threats that are largely uncertain, diffuse, difficult to quantify and yet potentially catastrophic. Above all else, geo-engineering reminds security scholars that maps of separate autonomous states are not the appropriate basis for discussing security in the Anthropocene era when the consequences of human actions are so all-encompassing. BUILD A STRONGER MORE, RESILIENT NATION. Fears about resource shortages have also been part of the environmental-security discussion. 53. 2. The first consideration targets the antagonistic understanding of security described by the Copenhagen School, whereas the second challenges the neoliberal discourse of risk. This is not to deny the relationships of power that are deployed in a process of securitization. 24. Kevin Trenberth, ‘Framing the Way to Relate Climate Extremes to Climate Change’, Climatic Change (Vol. 18. The two main arguments against considering the environment as a security issue come from Realists, and from those who warn against the problematic implications the word security brings with it. 51. However, once the possibilities of adjusting the planetary system are seriously discussed, this fraught matter becomes unavoidable. A comprehensive discussion of the technical possibilities is beyond the scope of this paper; see Naomi E Vaughan and Timothy M Lenton, ‘A Review of Geoengineering Proposals’, Climatic Change (Vol. As in the case of environmental security, climate security is about ‘the maintenance of achieved levels of civilization’ (Buzan et al 1998, 76). The second implication is related to the link between climate security and energy security. Some Caribbean states in particular use this strategy, which has been supported by a financial sector anxious to profit from financial instruments such as catastrophe bonds, through which investors, in effect, bet against disaster in particular places. Crucially, catastrophe bonds and, more generally, insurance are beyond the reach of the most vulnerable people, who are typically too poor to even buy simple insurance, much less become involved in more sophisticated financial arrangements.31 Insofar as human security is concerned, financial measures are not what is needed for those most likely to be in harm's way. 45. Ole Magnus Theisen, Helge Holtermann and Halvard Buhaug, ‘Climate Wars? 36. Indeed, metropolitan economies have long depended on distant food supplies and have indirectly disrupted distant ecologies in the process.36 Vulnerabilities to international supply are a matter of security for many states, which in the British case, at least, dates back to the nineteenth-century Corn Laws, as well as being a key issue in both world wars. 4, Spring 1998); Colin Kahl States, Scarcity and Civil Strife in the Developing World (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2006.). Although the debate waxed and waned, the concept slowly gained popularity. Yet others argued that ‘environmental security … is all about solidarity’ (Thompson 1999, 137). 16. Deudney argued that not only are practices and institutions associated with national security inadequate to deal with environmental problems, but security can also introduce a zero-sum rationality to the environmental debate that can create winners and losers, and undermine the cooperative efforts required by environmental problems. This set of practices is not necessarily codified nor can it be identified by specific rules. The second considers environmental policies as a threat. Just as large numbers of nuclear weapons make the consequences of warfare so serious that mutual restraint becomes much more important in terms of security,54 now the transformation of the earth system also requires discussion of co-operative measures to keep the planet within the broad ecological parameters that gave rise to human civilisation. CNA prepared a report, National Security and the Threat of Climate Change , that described how climate change is a threat multiplier for instability. In the post-Cold War era, the environmental security discourse opened the window for debating a common approach to security affairs. The Brandt Report (1980) suggested that ‘few threats to peace and survival of the human community are greater than those posed by the prospects of cumulative and irreversible degradation of the biosphere on which human life depends’ (quoted in Brauch 2003, 81). The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is premised on the assumption that pre-industrial levels of greenhouse gases, and the related temperature range over the previous few thousand years, is the answer, and that dangerous interference with this should be avoided. That is to say, if an issue succeeds in being labelled as a security issue, the method of handling it will be transformed. 30. 47. She continued that it is necessary to put ‘in place the condition for our future security and prosperity in a crowded and interdependent world’. 14, No. Violence is unlikely to occur along the fault-lines between developed and developing countries but it tends to be localized. Moreover it has been influential in the political and academic debate with its warning about the risk of framing environmental problems in security terms. Yet to maintain the existing way of life, it is necessary to change many present global structures. Securitization remains a very political moment. 81, 1990–91). In the case of the environment, it is possible that the securitization of climate change would result in confrontational politics, with states adopting politics to protect their territory against sea-level rising and immigration; with the Security Council adopting resolutions to impose emission targets, and even military action against polluting factories; and surveillance systems to monitor individual emissions. Climate change is likely to alter the local physical and strategic environment profoundly, and potentially catastrophically. Movies like The day after tomorrow and An inconvenient truth further reinforced the representation of climate change as a threat and a security issue. The country is already experiencing the impact of … The article is presented in three parts. The emergence of global environmental problems, such as global warming and ozone depletion, resulted in one of the first attempts to securitize the environment on a global scale. 44. The second focuses on local consolidation, increasing the resilience of the local population (10). The list of threats provided by Margaret Beckett is illustrative. Institutional innovation is also needed urgently. First, to what extent has climate change been conceptualized as a security concern in the past and do these recent initiatives indicate a discursive shift in the interna- This new recognition that future environmental conditions are being shaped by economic, urban, forestry and energy planning decisions changes the parameters of environmental security. Examples of such catastrophic events would be the disruption of the Gulf Stream, the weakening of the monsoon systems and the instability of continental ice sheets. While they may provide conveniently familiar justifications for military action in Africa and Asia on the part of Northern states, such actions do not begin to grapple with the root causes of the transformations that are causing climate change. This observation is particularly salient within the United States. 15, No. To help policymakers understand this threat in a UK context, researchers examined the effects of climate change on the UK MOD's Defence Lines of Development, covering concepts and doctrine, … Careful analysis of causal mechanisms and the impact of actions that have indirect consequences is very important in matters of climate security for the simple yet crucial reason that the earth's climate and economic system are connected; the economic system is, as such, adding new ‘forcing mechanisms’ to the climate system. There is now extensive literature on this topic looking specifically at regional differences, while emphasising the importance of economic and governance mechanisms in ensuring that people do not become vulnerable to climate change.53 Societal stability is important, but the key theme underlying discussion of the Anthropocene is that the world (and not only the climate) is being changed dramatically by human actions, so that while social stability is emphasised as a goal, the context within which humanity strives for such a goal is also changing. 1. Anthony D Barnosky et al., ‘Approaching a State Shift in Earth's Biosphere’, Nature (Vol. (eds), Climate Change, Human Security and Violent Conflict. One example of such difficulties emerged in 2012, with a small-scale attempt to measure the effects of enhancing the iron content of the Northern Pacific waters. The plan committed member states to raising the European share of renewable energy to 20 per cent, increasing energy efficiency, completing the internal market for electricity and gas, and the development of a common external energy policy. Realists tend to consider environmental problems as belonging to the realm of ‘low’ politics rather than an issue of ‘high’ politics, such as security. As this research progressed, it became apparent that while the processes of contemporary rural transformation were frequently conflict-ridden, the transformation itself was not a simple matter of environmental-change-induced violence.5 The attendant debate was mostly about conflict in the global South and potential political instabilities that might spill over into international disputes, and hence become a matter of international security. If major storms are now either more severe or more frequent as a result of the greater amount of energy in the hydro-meteorological system or, as the case of Sandy suggested, if storm speed and tracks may be altered by jet-stream ‘blocking’ patterns caused by changes in Arctic ice cover,27 then cities in the Northern Hemisphere are clearly vulnerable, too. Research on environmental conflicts has produced an intense academic debate concerning the empirical validity of the claims, their analytical relevance, methodology and normative implications. The Copenhagen School warns about the risk of securitization and distinguishes between securitization—‘meaning the issue is presented as an existential threat, requiring emergency measures and justifying actions outside the normal bounds of political procedure’—and politicization—‘meaning the issue is part of public policy, requiring government decision and resource allocations’ (Buzan et al 1998, 23–24). 115, No. 33. And yet it has contributed to shifting the attention to different kinds of vulnerabilities, suggesting that the instruments to provide stability require effort to promote both mitigation and adaptation to environmental impact and change, and that the best results are associated with early intervention and preventive measures. This agenda, under the rubric of human security, focuses on practical matters relating to keeping people alive and reducing violence in the event of social disruption. Constructivists and poststructuralists have challenged the narrow realist perspective, suggesting instead that threats are socially constructed. 1, 1991). 42. The US subsequently withdrew from the Kyoto Protocol, which was considered as a threat to the US economy. This suggests a set of security practices—based on risk management and on prevention—which are rather different from those suggested by the Copenhagen School. In addition, a focus on temperature alone, which is advocated by some popular geo-engineering plans – including the so-called ‘solar radiation management’ options to reduce the amount of sunlight reaching the earth's surface – leaves the problem of carbon-dioxide levels in the atmosphere, as well as other environmental transformations, unresolved. On what is securitized and what are Carbon Markets for: security energy. And what are Carbon Markets for both internal and external aspects of EU energy Policy ambitious. Reflects the logic of security with a specific representation of climate Policy no. To agriculture, especially in Africa security studies on health and problems related to depoliticization... On this dramatic reframing of the most noticeable is that few appeals to security stuck in fixed problematic that. Suffering ’, Foreign Affairs ( Vol and vegetables, just like luxury items, flown! 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