Weathering Risk for a Better World

Kaunas, Lithuania - 08 20 2017: Small tornado seen above a group of trees.

Climate change is one of the most pressing social, political and security issues of our time. Yet we still face significant gaps in our understanding of what this will ultimately entail for international peace and security. Therefore, decision-makers need information on the full range of risks that climate change poses to human security, including intersectional analyses taking account of gender, age and identity, different scales and likelihoods. Assessing the drivers, components, severity and probability of these risks is essential for decision-makers to engage in risk-informed policy-making and choose the right responses to promote both climate resilience and peace.

As UN Security Council member and Co-Chair of the Internal Expert Group (IEG) on climate security, Ireland had an opportunity to ensure that participating UN Security Council member states, as well as key implementing partners, were well informed of the diverse (human) security risks related to climate change, to facilitate risk-informed policy making which promotes climate resilience and sustainable peace.

This project accompanied and supported Ireland in promoting climate and security issues at the UN Security Council and in the field. It focused on providing Secretariat support to the IEG, as well as training and capacity to key staff at headquarters, the Permanent Mission to the UN, and key field missions. To this end, adelphi's project team identified and informed appropriate briefers, developed timely analyses and briefings on forthcoming mandate renewals – with a focus on highlighting linkages to youth and women, peace and security wherever relevant –, and educated Irish staff on these topics.

Capacity support and training from adelphi entailed:

  • a half-day introductory training on climate change and security risks, identification and steps to address them;
  • a workshop with the European Centre of Excellence for Civilian Crisis Management to support Common Security and Defence Policy cadres to better integrate climate security risks into existing processes such as early warning/conflict assessment tools;
  • ad hoc support with additional dialogues and consultations in the furtherance of Ireland’s UN Security Council climate security ambitions as part of Weathering Risk;
  • ad hoc analytical support and accompaniment as required.

Furthermore, the project supported the development of a global climate and security risk and foresight assessment, including a pilot assessment of the approach, and promoted the advancement of a unifying multidisciplinary, multilateral process on climate security.

This project contributed to the multisectoral and multilateral Weathering Risk initiative, led by adelphi and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.