DOD Leaders Discuss UN Climate Conference Talks

January 3, 2024

Defense Department leaders and the military services are working with global allies to address the security risks posed by climate change, which they say is why they were part of the U.S. delegation to the 28th Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28), the global climate conference held last year in Dubai, UAE.

“The link between climate change and national security has been discussed in the Pentagon’s strategic guidance documents since the George H.W. Bush administration 30 years ago,” several DOD leaders wrote in a recent Defense One op-ed. “But under the Biden administration, the Department has sharpened its focus on this challenge—and with good reason.”

The op-ed was written by several of the attendees who oversee environmental issues: Assistant Defense Secretary Brendan Owens, Assistant Navy Secretary Meredith Berger, Assistant Army Secretary Rachel Jacobson, Assistant Air Force Secretary Ravi Chaudhary and Deputy Assistant Defense Secretary Iris Ferguson.

“In Dubai, we carried the following message: U.S. leadership on climate change—including from DOD—is essential to our collective security.”

ADC photo of Owens by Will Noonan

January 3, 2024

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