INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR PREVENTING THE EXPLOITATION OF THE ENVIRONMENT IN WAR AND ARMED CONFLICT NOVEMBER 6

The final module in the SCID Courses considers the links between armed conflict and various transnational security risks, including climate change and environmental degradation – picking up on some of the issues address at the start of the course regarding the causes of conflict, such as resource scarcity, abundance and exploitation. This blog post explores the links between conflict and the environment, focussing particularly on the environmental harm caused by conflict. As environmental harm and degradation can contribute to the outbreak and escalation of conflict (where displacement or resource scarcity may have resulted, for instance) a vicious circle can be created where heightened insecurity increases the likelihood of further or sustained conflict and environmental harm.

Rise Up Times

INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR PREVENTING THE EXPLOITATION OF THE ENVIRONMENT IN WAR AND ARMED CONFLICT NOVEMBER 6

Though mankind has always counted its war casualties in terms of dead and wounded soldiers and civilians, destroyed cities and livelihoods, the environment has often remained the unpublicized victim of war.

“We must use all of the tools at our disposal, from dialogue and mediation to preventive diplomacy, to keep the unsustainable exploitation of natural resources from fueling and financing armed conflict and destabilizing the fragile foundations of peace.”

—Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

oil pollution in NIgeriaA major independent scientific assessment, released by the United Nations Environment Programme in 2011, shows that pollution from over 50 years of oil operations in the region has penetrated further and deeper than many may have supposed. Photo credit: UNEP

On 5 November 2001, the UN General Assembly declared 6 November of each year as the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation…

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