Austin says Climate change is an existential threat to our nation’s security

F.P. Report

WASHINGTON: Climate change is an existential threat to our nation’s security, and the Department of Defense must act swiftly and boldly to take on this challenge and prepare for damage that cannot be avoided.

Every day, our forces contend with the grave and growing consequences of climate change, from hurricanes and wildfires that inflict costly harm on U.S. installations and constrain our ability to train and operate, to dangerous heat, drought, and floods that can trigger crises and instability around the world.

The Climate Adaptation Plan will be our guide for meeting the nation’s warfighting needs under increasingly extreme environmental conditions—and for maintaining force readiness and resilience well into the future.

This plan will help the Department of Defense integrate climate considerations into our operations, our planning, and our business and decision-making processes. That includes how we train and equip our forces and new measures to strengthen the resilience of our infrastructure. This plan will also help ensure that our supply chains adapt to the realities of our changing climate.

We must take on these challenges as a team—from every corner of the Pentagon, on each of our installations and bases, across the federal government, and alongside our partners and allies.

We do not intend merely to adapt to the devastation of climate change. We will work with nations around the world to meet the threat. Tackling these challenges also presents an opportunity, because the bold steps we are taking are good for the climate and also good for our mission of defending the nation. With this roadmap, the U.S. military will become even more resilient, efficient, and innovative—and remain the world’s preeminent fighting force, ready to confront the risks of today and tomorrow.