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Unformatted text preview: COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION Brussels, 3 March 2008 7249/08 LIMITE POLGEN 27 PESC 289 ENER 69 ENV 141 DEVGEN 28 RELEX 146 REPORT from : the Commission and the Secretary-General/High Representative to : European Council Subject : Climate change and international security Delegations will find attached a joint paper by the Commission and the Secretary-General/High Representative concerning " Climate change and international security ". 7249/08 1 LIMITE EN ANNEX CLIMATE CHANGE AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY Paper from the High Representative and the European Commission to the European Council I INTRODUCTION The risks posed by climate change are real and its impacts are already taking place. The UN estimates that all but one of its emergency appeals for humanitarian aid in 2007 were climate related. In 2007 the UN Security Council held its first debate on climate change and its implications for international security. The European Council has drawn attention to the impact of climate change on international security and in June 2007 invited the High Representative and the European Commission to present a joint report to the European Council in Spring 2008. The science of climate change is now better understood. The findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change demonstrate that even if by 2050 emissions would be reduced to below half of 1990 levels, a temperature rise of up to 2ºC above pre-industrial levels will be difficult to avoid. Such a temperature increase will pose serious security risks that would increase if warming continues. Unmitigated climate change beyond 2ºC will lead to unprecedented security scenarios as it is likely to trigger a number of tipping points that would lead to further accelerated, irreversible and largely unpredictable climate changes. Investment in mitigation to avoid such scenarios, as well as ways to adapt to the unavoidable should go hand in hand with addressing the international security threats created by climate change; both should be viewed as part of preventive security policy. Climate change is best viewed as a threat multiplier which exacerbates existing trends, tensions and instability. The core challenge is that climate change threatens to overburden states and regions which are already fragile and conflict prone. It is important to recognise that the risks are not just of a humanitarian nature; they also include political and security risks that directly affect European interests. Moreover, in line with the concept of human security, it is clear that many issues related to the impact of climate change on international security are interlinked requiring comprehensive policy responses. For example, the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals would be at considerable risk because climate change, if unmitigated, may well wipe out years of development efforts....
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This note was uploaded on 12/06/2011 for the course POL 101 taught by Professor Sekercioglu during the Fall '08 term at SUNY Stony Brook.
- Fall '08