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The Impact of Climate Change on Global and Local Security Governance

5 February, 2020

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Climate change presents a major threat not only to sustainable development and global biodiversity but also to peace and security. Security sectors around the world are increasingly faced with the challenges of climate security risks, given their traditional role in disaster risk prevention, management, and response - but also in migration and border management, conflict prevention and peacebuilding.

The linkages between climate change and the security sector are thus twofold:

  • security infrastructure, equipment and operations are being directly affected by the impacts of climate change, and the emerging security challenges associated with climate change at times lead to a shift in the mandate of local security sectors.
  • through its active role in responding to many of the climate-related security risks, the security sector has a unique role to play in preventing and mitigating climate security risks.

The report recommends that climate change considerations need to be more systematically integrated into security sector governance and reform to ensure that security sectors are prepared to deal with climate security challenges, and to ensure good governance principles are upheld when addressing climate security risks. Additionally, research on climate security risks should be intensified to contribute to a more in-depth understanding of the linkages between climate change and security risks at the local level.