Climate and Security: New approaches to address climate security risks

Drought Africa, A New Climate for Peace, climate change, conflict, security

States and societies are increasingly under pressure from a multitude of shocks and stressors, including population growth, resource constraints and political unrest. Climate change is a risk multiplier. It will worsen already fragile situations, making it harder to promote peace, adaptation and sustainable development. Climate-related security concerns include impacts on food and water supply, increased competition for natural resources, natural disasters and loss of livelihoods, migration and displacement.

In order to tackle the destabilizing effects of climate change in fragile contexts, comprehensive and cross-sectoral responses are required. UNEP, in cooperation with the European Union, commissioned adelphi to support their joint project “Climate Change and Security”. The project was one of the first to directly address climate-security risks by integrating climate change adaptation and peacebuilding approaches. It aimed at developing and testing practical approaches to address climate-security risks on the ground and disseminate the lessons learned on the global level.

adelphi supported UNEP with the design and implementation of the field component in Nepal and Sudan, e.g. by contributing to baseline development and data collection, establishing a monitoring and evaluation system and building the capacities of implementation staff and government representatives. In the project’s first phase, adelphi developed a guidance tool that can be used to carry out climate security assessments. In the second phase, the project partners continued to update and adapt the tool based on their experiences during implementation. In the last phase, the focus was on disseminating the results beyond the two pilot countries, for example through developing the first Massive Open Online Course on climate-security.