DOD Not Shying Away from Preparing for Climate Impacts

DOD Not Shying Away from Preparing for Climate Impacts

The military is quietly taking steps to address the effects of climate change on its infrastructure, particularly coastal installations vulnerable to rising sea levels, even as the Trump administration has tried to downplay the issue across the federal government. On the surface the Pentagon has limited its use of the phrase “climate change,” but the department’s efforts to respond to weather-related risks have largely continued since President Trump took office, reports the Washington Times.

On the Atlantic Coast, for example, Marine Corps leaders say they will consider building a sea wall to protect Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C., from rising water levels; on the opposite coast, the Navy has partnered with the city of San Diego to monitor and prepare for sea-level rise. “DOD has not changed its approach on ensuring installations and infrastructure are resilient to a wide range of challenges, including climate and other environmental considerations,” said Pentagon spokeswoman Heather Babb.

What has changed is the willingness of senior military leaders to talk explicitly about climate change. “We don’t see them talk about climate change, but we see them talk about ‘resilience’ and the need for enhanced resilience at military bases,” said Jonathan Gensler, the founder of Tennessee-based energy efficiency firm Revive Energy.

Photo courtesy of Air National Guard

Dan Cohen
Dan Cohen
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