Parliamentary inquiry on the Implications of Climate Change for National Security

Hamilton Stone was tasked by Griffith University's Climate Change Response Program with synthesising publications and stakeholder views for a submission to a national parliamentary inquiry on the implications of climate change for national security.

The Inquiry, undertaken by the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee, makes particular reference to long-term risks, the humanitarian and military response in addressing climate change, and the capacity of Australia’s security agencies to respond to climate change risks in our region.

The thrust of the Griffith Climate Change Response Program's submission is that there are significant long-term risks posed by climate chnage to national security and international security in the Asia-Pacific region. There is an increasing pressure on states that already lack resilient infrastructure and institutions, and will be further destabilised by increasingly frequent or severe weather events, sea level rise, and changes to food and water security.  The Griffith Climate Change Response Program's research has highlighted some of the ways Australia can and should respond to these challenges, both domestically and internationally. Intelligent and evidence-based responses, such as ecosystem-based approaches to adaptation interventions, and information knowledge management, have the potential to better prepare for the impacts of a rapidly changing climate and also to deliver a higher standard of quality development assistance. 

The Committee received 70 submissions and tabled its report on 17 May 2018.  The submission was quoted in several places, particularly in a chapter on opportunities to increase regional resilience.  We were pleased to see that a number of the Committee's recommendations directly reflect issues raised in the Climate Change Response Program's submission. The final report can be accssed here.