Advancing European Union Action to Address Climate-related Security Risks

This SIPRI Research Policy Paper assesses the priorities of selected European Union (EU) member states regarding climate-related security risks, explores their strategies for pursuing these at EU level and identifies steps for further action. 

It finds that member states’ level of political commitment to tackling climate-related security risks at the EU level varies. While maintaining the operational efficiency of the military is a red line, concentrating efforts on research, development and peacekeeping is acceptable even to countries that do not prioritize climate insecurity in their policies. 

Country strategies for pursuing such efforts involve spotlighting climate security during their respective rotating Council presidencies, working closely with the European External Action Service and the European Commission, and collaborating with like-minded member states. 

The paper recommends additional steps for action, but in order to make effective adjustments to EU processes, climate security will need greater prominence on the EU agenda.

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