By Larry Bell
I’m enormously pleased that the Trump White House is working to assemble a panel headed by my very good and highly distinguished friend Dr. William Happer, deputy assistant to the president and senior director for emerging technologies for the National Security Council (NSC), to assess whether climate change poses a national security threat.
Dr. Happer, an emeritus professor of physics at Princeton University, is eminently qualified to spearhead this effort.
The purpose of the new federal panel is “to advise the president on scientific understanding of today’s climate, how the climate might change in the future under natural and human influences, and how a changing climate could affect the security of the United States.”
The NSC has noted that while the government has issued several major reports identifying climate change as a serious threat, “However, these scientific and national security judgements have not undergone a rigorous independent and adversarial peer review to examine certainties and uncertainties of climate science, as well as implications for national security.”
So how did climate ever become a national security issue in the first place?
The answers reveal why such an investigation is long-overdue.
In 2007, then-Senate Armed Services Committee members Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and John Warner, R-Va., snuck some language into the National Defense Authorization Act which got the U.S. military into the climate protection business whether they wanted to be or not. The amendment required DOD to consider the effects of climate change upon their facilities, capabilities and missions.
Then in 2010, the DOD issued a Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) declaring that climate change will play a “significant role in shaping the future security environment” and cause a “need to adjust to the impacts of climate change on our facilities and military capabilities.”
The QDR warned that this climate threat ” . . . may act as an accelerant of instability or conflict, placing a burden to respond on civilian institutions and militaries around the world.”
A key threat highlighted by security planners in 2009 revolved around concern that global warming would melt the massive Himalayan mountain chain ice mass by 2035. In theory, this would cause rivers fed by Himalayan glaciers to flood.
Then, after the glaciers retreated, the rivers would dry up, endangering the water supplies needed by tens of millions of people in lowland Bangladesh.
According to retired Air Marshal A.K. Singh, a former commander in India’s air force, the resulting water shortages would cause calamitous mass migration conflicts across national borders, with militaries (including ours) becoming involved.
That dire prediction was based upon a report published by none other than the presumably omnipotent United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Yet as the IPCC later admitted, the entire scenario was completely fabricated with absolutely no supporting science.
Its author worked for the IPCC’s director, Rajendra Pachauri, a railroad engineer whose scientific train wreck career was finally derailed in 2015 by sexual harassment accusations by another employee.
The 2010 Obama administration QDR climate crisis response strategy included provisions to “. . . Investigate alternative concepts for improving operational energy use.”
The priority was to increase renewable energy supplies and reduce energy demand to “improve operational effectiveness, reduce greenhouse gas emissions in support of U.S. climate change initiatives, and protect the Department from energy price fluctuations.”
Former Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. Hayward (Ret.) offered his thoughts to me about this in a June 3, 2012 Forbes.com article I posted regarding serious compromises to national defense policies based upon scientifically unfounded climate alarmism.
Adm. Hayward was — and is — particularly critical of the elite Central Naval Analysis Military Advisory Board’s predisposition to accept IPCC findings without question, then to nonsensically conclude that climate change constituted a “threat multiplier” posing national security concerns.
The admiral pointed out that the 2010 CNAMAB had heard from only one side of the climate debate.
Their review of the issue relied entirely on testimony from Dr. James Hansen, then-director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, a small climate modeling shop lodged above a restaurant in a midtown Manhattan office building.
If that name sounds familiar, James Hansen starred as key witness at then-Sen. Al Gore’s June 23, 1988 Committee on Science, Technology and Space Hearings, claiming with 99 percent certainty that global temperatures were rising due to a human-influenced “greenhouse effect.”
Disgracefully, the politically-protected anti-fossil fuel celebrity activist retained his NASA government position even after being arrested four times during White House protests.
Adm. Hayward told me, “Despite the number of scientific organizations within DoD and the military services, none has challenged the IPCC’s flawed science of climate change, when in fact, available science literature is replete with peer-reviewed research contradicting their assertion that man is primarily responsible.”
That available literature might now be updated to note that satellite images taken between 2000 and 2016 reveal that the only Himalayan mountain meltdowns turned out to be entirely political.