Congressional Research Service. June 7, 2013.
The diminishment of Arctic sea ice has led to increased human activities in the Arctic, and has heightened interest in, and concerns about, the region’s future. The United States, by virtue of Alaska, is an Arctic country and has substantial interests in the region. On May 10, 2013, the Obama Administration released a national strategy document for the Arctic region. Record low extents of Arctic sea ice over the past decade have focused scientific and policy attention on links to global climate change and projected ice-free seasons in the Arctic within decades. These changes have potential consequences for weather in the United States, access to mineral and biological resources in the Arctic, the economies and cultures of peoples in the region, and national security.
http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R41153.pdf [PDF format, 109 pages].
Natural Resouces Defense Council. August 21, 2012.
Getting food from the farm to our fork eats up 10 percent of the total U.S. energy budget, uses 50 percent of U.S. land, and swallows 80 percent of all freshwater consumed in the United States. Yet, 40 percent of food in the United States today goes uneaten. This not only means that Americans are throwing out the equivalent of $165 billion each year, but also that the uneaten food ends up rotting in landfills as the single largest component of U.S. municipal solid waste where it accounts for almost 25 percent of U.S. methane emissions. This report analyzes the latest case studies and government data on the causes and extent of food losses at every level of the U.S. food supply chain. It also provides examples and recommendations for reducing this waste. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
http://www.nrdc.org/food/files/wasted-food-IP.pdf [PDF format, 26 pages].
Center for Strategic & International Studies. April 17, 2012.
The United States has just begun to wrestle with the complications of an interconnected global environment where economic power, access to resources, and cutting-edge technologies are redefining national power. The next president must address the myriad vulnerabilities and opportunities in this shifting landscape and develop a new national economic security strategy, says the author. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
http://csis.org/files/publication/120417_gf_zarate.pdf [PDF format, 3 pages].
U.S. Institute of Peace. February 1, 2012.
Climate change can be a conflict multiplying mechanism as it fosters unforeseen conflicts and reinforces existing ones. While there are many causes of conflict, climate change can be a trigger in the sequence. Climate effects that constrain resources are unequally distributed to those countries already in the most desperate situations. Coupled with rising population growth, these events are likely to heighten poverty in the future if no action is taken. Adaptive development must be sustainable to bridge existing shortfalls, must plan for anticipated effects, and provide for the longer-term picture. More developed and higher carbon-emitting states should engage in mitigation efforts to reduce these effects. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
http://www.usip.org/files/resources/PB%20120.pdf [PDF format, 4 pages].
Center for American Progress. January 2012.
In the coming decades climate change will increasingly threaten humanity’s shared interests and collective security in many parts of the world, disproportionately affecting the globe’s least developed countries. These ill effects will have serious implications for U.S. national security interests as well as global stability – extending from the sustainability of coastal military installations to the stability of nations that lack the resources, good governance, and resiliency needed to respond to the many adverse consequences of climate change. And as these effects accelerate, the stress will impact human migration and conflict around the world. It is difficult to fully understand the detailed causes of migration and economic and political instability, but the growing evidence of links between climate change, migration, and conflict raise plenty of reasons for concern. [Note: contains copyrighted material].
http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2012/01/pdf/climate_migration.pdf [PDF format, 52 pages].