The most recent assessment report on climate change by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has established beyond doubt that human activities have altered the earth’s climate system. Climate change is now widely recognized as one of the major forces shaping the future and is an example of how human actions fundamentally affect the basic physical processes of the world, with far-reaching and, in the worst-case scenario, disastrous consequences for human societies. Given these profound impacts, climate change is increasingly being treated as a security risk. Because of the diverse impacts a changing climate is having and will continue to have across the globe, the security challenges are of a multifaceted character, involving the human, community, state and international security. Effective policy responses in different policy areas will be pivotal to addressing these risks. This talk provides an overview of climate-related security risks and policy responses for addressing those risks. It does this by, first, analysing six thematic areas in which climate change can pose security risks, and then investigating how policy organizations integrate climate-related security risks into their policies and practical work. The overarching aim is to contribute practical alternatives on how to address and work with climate-related security risks. The study provides a deeper understanding of the opportunities and challenges presented by different integration strategies. We believe that this knowledge is required to allow policymakers to accurately assess the value of current strategies and identify how policies, strategic guidance, internal organization and procedures could be improved in order to respond better to climate-related security risks.
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