Reconciling environmental degradation and US national security
Kraverath, Scott C.
Looney, Robert E.
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Although environmental concerns are nothing new, only recently have environmental issues been considered as having national security implications. Along with increased environmental awareness, the end of the Cold War has allowed security planners the latitude to reconcile and integrate nonmilitary concerns, including the environment, into what has traditionally been exclusively military oriented policy. This transition or broadening of national security policy to include these issues is proving slow and controversial. The nature of environmental issues is such that their inclusion into a national security framework is not an easy one. Because of the current and potential national security threats embodied in environmental degradation, a coherent environmental security policy needs to be formulated. Because of the scope, complexity, and unknown nature of environmental issues this has not yet been accomplished. By defining issues, setting criteria and examining individual cases of environmental degradation in the Western Hemisphere and case studies from Brazil and Mexico, this thesis attempts to facilitate the recognition of environmental degradation as a U.S. national security issue. The thesis seeks to provide a greater depth of understanding of environmental security issues and suggest methods by which solutions for environmental problems may be found
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