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COP24 Side-Event: Building new alliances around climate and security: Germany’s initiative for the UN Security Council

14 December 2018, 12:00
German Pavilion, COP24 Venue

The German Federal Foreign Office, in partnership with adelphi, will host a side-event to look into the security risks brought about by climate change, the roles that can be taken up by UN bodies and the distinct vulnerability of Small Island Developing States to climate-security risks.

Climate change is a growing threat to international peace and security. The rise of extreme weather events, droughts, and water scarcity, often in areas with transboundary waters, can aggravate already fragile situations and amplify conflicts. Rising sea levels can endanger the existence of whole nations.

Yet while climate change is increasingly shaping the international security landscape, the international community is still often lacking the tools for systematically analyzing the security implications of climate change in specific regions, as well as a clear vision as to what roles different parts of the UN can and should play in building resilience against these impacts. Critical questions include:

  • How can we improve our early warning capacities when it comes to climate-related security risks? What information needs to reach whom to ensure that early warning results in appropriate action? What capacities are needed where to facilitate improved decision-making?
  • What actions can the international community undertake to help states improve their resilience against the destabilizing effects of climate change? What are promising examples to build on? What roles should different institutions play? How can the UN Security Council in particular best discharge its responsibility for international peace and security?
  • How can the climate-security agenda help us to strengthen existing and to forge new alliances that can support ambition in the implementation of the Paris agreement?

The panel will specifically focus on the situation of Small Island Developing States which are particularly vulnerable to climate-security risks.

Germany is committed to advancing the climate-security agenda during its membership in the UN Security Council in 2019 and 2020. With Nauru as co-chair Germany launched a Group of Friends on Climate and Security on 1 August 2018. The initiative is being supported by an international expert network.

The event will take place on 14 December 2018 from 12:00-13:30.

Light lunch and drinks will be served.


  • Marlene Moses - Permanent Representative of Nauru to the United Nations
  • Michaela Späth - Director for Energy and Climate Policy, Economic Affairs and Human Rights, International Labour Rights and Issues, Federal Foreign Office
  • Inger Buxton - Deputy Head of the Department of Global Agenda at the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs

Moderation: Camilla Born - Senior Policy Advisor, E3G

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