Climate change tremors to be borne by security forces

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London, Jan 24 (UNI) Climate change unleashing violent storms, raising sea temperatures and changing weather patterns will lead to disputes and create new security threats round the world in the coming decades, a new report said.

According to the report from the Oxford Research Group, both the developed and the developing world faces the prospect of wars over resources like water and food. There will also be a pressure from hundreds of millions of ''environmental refugees'' fleeing their devastated homelands displaced by conflicts, natural disasters and large development projects.

Security forces might have to cope with demands for tougher border controls, potentially violent protests against polluting companies and intercommunal tensions.

Resistance to measures to mitigate global warming and policing new laws to limit greenhouse gases was also a possibility.

Traditional attempts to maintain the status quo and control insecurity are doomed to failure in such instance, author Chris Abbott warned, calling for leadership from politicians to develop new co-operative approaches to manage climate change.

''It is almost certain that, by 2050, droughts, food shortages and flooding will lead to the mass movement of up to 200 million environmental refugees,'' he said, adding it would lead to ''kneejerk'' demands for tighter border controls, inter-communal violence, right-wing protests and racially-motivated attacks on immigrants.

The work titled 'An Uncertain Future: Law Enforcement, National Security and Climate Change' stated that any failure by the authorities to respond to extreme weather events or ''draconian'' official measures to protect and provide for populations could lead to resentment, resistance and a breakdown of trust in the police, particularly if they are seen as protecting the interests of the political and financial elites.

Meanwhile, armed forces would be required to take part in peacekeeping and disaster relief operations, as the very countries most likely to be affected by climate change have weak and fragile states with limited capacity to respond effectively.

Scientists say global average temperatures will rise by between 1.8 and 4.0 degrees Celsius this century as a result of the burning of fossil fuels for transport and power generation.

There is a need to rethink of current approaches to security and the development of co-operative and sustainable ways of achieving that security, with an emphasis on preventative rather than reactive strategies and the step was to be taken now, the report said.

UNI XC SYU GC1129

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