How the 'near-term reality' of climate change will lead to 'warfare,' conflicts and 'political instability'
As climate change continues to accelerate, disasters will become more common — from floods, hurricanes and tornadoes in humid places to wildfires and droughts in areas known for dry heat. One of the results of all this severe weather, according to the Daily Beast's Mike Pearl, will be an increase in wars and military conflicts.
"Climate-related warfare is a near-term reality — not some far-off boogeyman — according to leading defense thinkers and military strategists," Pearl reports. "They are still talking about the importance of fighting climate change, but they're also making plans to fight other human beings because of climate change. So, where will these climate-related battles take place?"
Pearl continues, "Some people argue they already have, with controversial academic reports claiming recent conflicts were directly spurred by the effects of climate change. Other military advisers and strategists have identified specific new wars that could erupt in Asia, Africa or the Arctic."
The journalist points out that according to the think tank The Atlantic Council, conflicts could emerge as Russia and China look for new shipping routes through areas around Greenland, Iceland and the Arctic Circle. But Matthew Rendall, a lecturer at the University of Nottingham, believes that Syria and Somalia will be more likely climate battlegrounds.
Rendall told the Beast, "They are already hot. Most of them are also a lot poorer. As a result, they're more likely to suffer acute resource shortages, mass migration of refugees, and political instability. Moreover, China and Russia have nuclear weapons. They may quarrel over the Arctic, but they are unlikely to fight World War III over it — that would just be too costly."
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