Climate change in today’s age is representing the latest in a series of environmental drivers of human conflict that have been identified in recent decades, following others that include drought, desertification, land degradation, failing water supplies, deforestation, fisheries depletion, and even ozone depletion. By the 1990s, climate modeling had become more sophisticated and actual patterns of change in regional climate conditions were observed more closely after which policy-makers began accepting that ways must be found to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Doing so would necessitate drastic changes to the use of fossil fuels due to which climate change quickly became an economic and energy policy issue. But in just the past few years, the language of climate change has shifted once again. Climate change is now being recast as a threat to international peace and security. Presently, the effects of climate change are being felt: temperatures are rising, icecaps and glaciers are melting and extreme weather events are becoming more frequent and more intense. 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 was climate related. In 2007 the UN Security Council held its first debate on climate change and its implications for international security. With advancements in technology, the science of climate change is 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. The reference point of this paper is the effect of global warming on international security which today is best viewed as a threat multiplier that 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 Scope:
In order to understand the implications of global warming, this paper will briefly explain the global warming phenomena, its causes, impacts, and subsequently its effects on internal security. Thereafter, the paper will go on to briefly describe the effects on various areas around the globe and will conclude the paper by stating the international response to this ever growing threat and suggest possible remedial actions. CHAPTER 2
GLOBAL WARMING-CAUSES AND IMPACTS
Global Warming is defined as the increase of the average temperature on Earth. As the Earth is getting hotter, disasters like hurricanes, droughts and floods are getting more frequent. Over the last 100 years, the average temperature of the air near the Earth´s surface has risen a little less than 1° Celsius (0.74 ± 0.18°C, or 1.3 ± 0.32° Fahrenheit). It is responsible for the conspicuous increase in storms, floods and raging forest fires we have seen in the last ten years. Data shows that an increase of one degree Celsius makes the Earth warmer now than it has been for at least a thousand years. Out of the 20 warmest years on record, 19 have occurred since 1980. The three hottest years ever observed have all occurred in the last ten years.
THE GREENHOUSE EFFECT
The "greenhouse effect" is the heating of the Earth due to the presence of greenhouse...