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Security Strategies and Environment

Security Strategies and Environment

27 September 2007

Environmental Security has gained importance in the current political discourse. Last year's discussions in the Security Council give testimony to this development. During a presentation given at the Bonn International Centre for Conversion (BICC), Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf analyses whether and to what extent relevant security strategies of the US, the UN and EU integrate environmental aspects.

In his presentation, Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf argues that - in general terms - relevant strategies recognize an interrelation between the environment and security. However, none of the strategies in question provide concrete guidance on how their broad security objectives, which often make reference to the relevance of environmental degradation, can be made operational. There are various reasons for the lack of concrete guidance. Besides the nascent state of the debate, there is a limited understanding in security circles on environmental issues and vice versa. This gap in understanding needs to be bridged through improved communication. Despite its shortcomings and limited success, the EU Cardiff Process on the integration of environmental aspects into other policy areas could provide valuable lessons for an improved integration of environmental issues into security policies.

A summary of the presentation [pdf, 45KB, English] is available for download.

27 September 2007
Bonn, Germany
Environment, Security, Climate Protection, Strategies, UN, United Nations, Cardiff Process