Climate Change and the Military

P. K. Gautam was a Consultant at Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detail profile.
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  • October 2009

    India is a responsible regional and global power. The military is a highly energy and material intensive part of a nation. It is also destructive in its primary mission. It is incumbent that the Indian military also must be part of the adaptation and mitigation process of climate change and related matters such as arresting environmental degradation and restoration of natural capital. This article shows some indirect linkages of climate change and war in the past. In addressing the contemporary debate on climate change it shows the existing initiatives and ethos in the military in green consciousness. Areas where the military needs to understand the scientific basis of impact on its warfighting capacity is a priority issue which has been highlighted from the open domain. The military's efforts in arresting climate change including ozone depletion is just one part of the spectrum. It also includes future challenges of reducing, to the extent possible due to operational reasons, the military's impact on the environment in the future and some areas for further research.

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