Stories

Blind to the threat

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Satellite observation is vital to understanding climate change and the threat it poses to national security, but the U.S. government has ignored warnings that the aging environmental satellite system is close to collapse. Now the Obama administration wants to make up for lost time — but increased satellite spending will face some Republicans in Congress who call climate change a hoax.

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Losing the Andes glaciers

HUARAZ, Peru — U.S. officials have called climate change in South America a national security threat, but little has been done. Rapid glacier melt in the Andes is a leading example; how the U.S. chooses to respond will affect the region’s stability, and Americans’ national security.

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Our man in the greenhouse

WASHINGTON–Drought, crop losses and natural disasters breed state instability,violence and extremism, and climate change stands to make bad situations worse. But current and former national security officials say the U.S. government needs to know a lot more to prepare for the coming threat.

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Houston oil infrastructure exposed to storms

HOUSTON- Lessons from Hurricane Ike reveal weaknesses in Houston’s defenses against storms and rising sea water. Climate scientists and storm modelers expect the effects of climate change to make crucial energy infrastructure there more vulnerable.

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Disease: A top U.S. security threat

WASHINGTON–The U.S. is just getting started on dealing with the potential health impacts of climate change, according to some experts and U.S. officials, who say it could contribute to the dangerous spread of infectious diseases and possibly pandemics

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U.S. military grasps effects of the rising tide

RAJENDRAPUR, Bangladesh–Experts say sea level rise could engulf 17 percent of Bangladesh’s landmass and displace 20 million people by 2050. The U.S. military is just now acknowledging that such 21st century challenges will require large-scale humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions.

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Bases at Risk

The 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review cites 30 U.S. military installations as being at risk from sea level rise. Take a look at how the Department of Defense is addressing the issue at a few of its major coastal installations.

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Arctic military posturing heats up

KODIAK, Alaska–While many of the national security threats posed by climate change exist in the realm of the future, the changes in the Arctic are happening right now —but some say the U.S. government is unprepared for the challenges they bring.

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