Washington’s pull-out from the universal treaty on global warming known as the Paris Agreement has sparked concerns of a challenge to national security, but a senior U.S. congressman isn’t worried.
Responding to CNBC’s question on the topic, Rep. Mac Thornberry, chairman of the U.S. House Armed Services Committee — a body responsible for national military services — acknowledged climate change’s importance on defense policy but warned against placing too much focus on a single agreement.
“One agreement is not the whole universe of climate change,” Thornberry said at the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore on Saturday.
Back in March, Defense Secretary James Mattis noted that climate change was a national security threat and said environmental changes in regions such as the Arctic could impact military operations. Others have warned how extreme weather can cause instability in the form of infectious disease outbreaks and energy blackouts that could be exploited by terror groups.
And with the U.S. backing out from the Paris treaty, which aims to reduce carbon emissions, many are worried about security implications.
The White House does take climate change seriously and President Donald Trump is open to renegotiating the Paris agreement, Thornberry stated.