Tagged: Security

Geoscience plays a critical role in seaport infrastructure.

We’d Face A Rocky Road Without Geoscience

When most people enter a hiking trail with several days’ worth of food, they’re at the start of a camping adventure. For residents of Big Sur, California, they’re making one of many weekly trips back from the grocery store. Four months ago, a mudslide collapsed a bridge, making the small hiking path the only access to the outside world for much of Big Sur.

The U.S. Navy base in Norfolk, Virginia, is one of the many U.S. military bases located on the coast. (Credit: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Ernest R. Scott/Wikipedia)

Why The Military Plans For Climate Change

In a world where terrorism and nuclear arms races abound, many Americans don’t link climate change and national security. However, military leaders want you to know that changing climate conditions do pose a threat to our nation — as they acknowledged in the 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review — and that we can’t prepare properly for its effects without knowing more about the ocean and atmosphere. In a joint briefing Thursday held by the Center for Climate Security and the American Security Project, “Climate Change and the Risks to National Security,” senior military and national security experts Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn, USN (Ret.), Brigadier General Stephen Cheney, USMC (Ret.), and Brigadier General David McGinnis, USA (Ret.) discussed how climate change effectively alters the environment in which the military operates.

The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure discusses future of marine shipping and inland waterways. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Protecting Our Ports

During a cruise to see the Statue of Liberty on a trip to “The City That Never Sleeps,” you might be surprised to learn that over three million cargo containers traverse those same waters to the Port of New York and New Jersey every year. Ports are part of our nation’s surface infrastructure, which also includes railways, pipelines, and tunnels. The Senate Commerce, Scienceand Transportation Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety and Security held a hearing to discuss the security of our nation’s critical transportation infrastructure.

The EPA and its regulations that protect human and environmental health are under scrutiny. (Credit: Peter Kratochvil/PublicDomainPictures.net)

Groups Urge Trump To Appoint Science Adviser

The leaders of 29 science organizations are urging President-elect Donald Trump to meet with them and quickly appoint a science adviser. Signers of the new Trump letter include most major science groups, including the American Association for the Advancement of Science and American Geophysical Union. Appointment of an adviser would help the president-elect analyze effective ways to use science and technology to address national challenges, the leaders said.

An aerial view of Norfolk Naval Station, the largest naval base in the world. (Credit: Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Christopher B. Stoltz/Released)

Creating A Game Plan For Resiliency Against Rising Seas

Imagine Naval Station Norfolk, the largest naval base in the world, complete with fourteen piers and eleven aircraft hangars, submerged by seawater. That scenario is not far from reality — Norfolk is located in the Hampton Roads, Virginia area, which has seen the highest rates of sea level rise along the eastern coast of the U.S. Its vulnerable location and vital importance to the nation made the area an ideal pilot project, born out of President Obama’s 2013 executive order for the U.S. to prepare for the impacts of climate change. The two-year Hampton Roads Sea Level Rise Preparedness and Resilience Intergovernmental Pilot Project (IPP) was launched in 2014 and headed by Old Dominion University.

The U.S. Navy base in Norfolk, Virginia, is one of the many U.S. military bases located on the coast. (Credit: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Ernest R. Scott/Wikipedia)

Military Experts Agree: Consequences Of Climate Change Are Clear

Starving polar bears and bleached coral reefs are often the face of climate change today, but what many people do not realize is that climate change also threatens national security. Members of the U.S. national security community have been studying the impacts of climate change, namely sea level rise, and the associated threats to our military installations and missions. The results of their studies were compiled into three reports that were discussed at this week’s first annual Climate and National Security Forum. The forum consisted of three panels with several authors from each report serving on the respective panels.

FEMA's Technical Mapping Advisory Council makes recommendations on flood maps. (Credit: Walter Jennings/Wikipedia)

Outdated Flood Maps Fuel Reform

When the 1,000-year-flood event hit south Louisiana last month, an estimated 60,000 structures were damaged, including those both inside and outside of the flood zone. In a hearing last week, Representative John Mica (FL-07) noted that 80 percent of homeowners did not have flood insurance because, based on maps produced by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), they were not in areas that were considered vulnerable to flooding. These floodmaps are in urgent need of updating and were the focus of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing to review the recommendations of the Technical Mapping Advisory Council’s (TMAC) 2015 Annual Report for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

The Defense Department has been planning for climate change for more than a decade. (Credit: U.S. Navy, Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Tiffini M. Jones)

Navy Sees Future Gaps In Subs

At a hearing in front of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces, the discussion centered not only the need to build more submarines but on the technological advances that will be required.