Our military calls climate change “an urgent and growing threat to our national security, contributing to increased natural disasters, refugee flows, and conflicts over basic resources like food and water.”
And this month the Obama administration announced a comprehensive strategy to incorporate climate change into our national security strategy. But there was no mention of money: how much this would cost or where the money would come from.
Next month, we’ll know whether we’ll have a climate denier or an advocate for climate action in the White House, and a Congress either continuing to resist or ready to tackle this threat. They’ll need to know what we’re currently spending as a baseline for debate over what we need to spend. Next to regulation, money is the key tool government has to spur CO2 reductions in the atmosphere.
But the federal government hasn’t produced a climate change budget since 2013. Meanwhile, we’re at the white-hot center of the refugee crisis in Syria. And though the conditions leading to this tragedy were laid by geopolitics and internal politics, one of the worst long-term droughts in history that gripped the country from 2006 to 2010 also played a major role.