Inquiry into the implications of climate change for Australia's national security

17 May 2018

On 14 June 2017 the Senate referred the following to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee for inquiry and report by 4 December 2017: The implications of climate change for Australia's national security, with particular reference to:

  • a. the threats and long-term risks posed by climate change to national security and international security, including those canvassed in the National security implications of climate-related risks and a changing climate report by the United States Department of Defense;
  • b. the role of both humanitarian and military response in addressing climate change, and the means by which these responses are implemented;
  • c. the capacity and preparedness of Australia's relevant national security agencies to respond to climate change risks in our region;
  • d. the role of Australia's overseas development assistance in climate change mitigation and adaptation more broadly;
  • e. the role of climate mitigation policies in reducing national security risks; and
  • f. any other related matters

Chapter 1 provides information on terminology and introduces the United States Department of Defense (US DoD) report mentioned in the terms of reference. It also summarises Australia's climate security governance arrangements.

Chapter 2 provides an overview of the key ways in which climate change threatens national security.

Chapter 3 discusses national measures to improve Australia's climate security, and

Chapter 4 includes particular suggestions for the Department of Defence (Defence) from the evidence.

Chapter 5 outlines suggested initiatives to enhance climate resilience in Australia's region.Chapter 6 includes the committee's conclusions and recommendations.

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