Canadian Foreign Minister Dion calls climate change a risk amplifier

In his recent address at the Climate Change and Security: Fragile States conference on March 30 2016, Canadian Foreign Minister Stéphane Dion spoke about the climate-security-nexus, stating that conflicts like the Syrian civil war may not have been caused by climate change but that climate change very well has amplified the risks.

Referring to report A New Climate for Peace, commissioned by the G7 foreign ministers, he reiterated that climate change multiplies risks in fragile states in seven ways (see the infographics).

Moreover, he emphasised the need to focus on interagency, cross-sectoral and multilateral efforts in order to address the challenges of climate change in fragile states:

“The holistic approach is what we need within our countries, but also between countries. We cannot work in isolation. When they met in Washington, Prime Minister Trudeau and President Barack Obama recognized the particular impact of climate change on countries already dealing with conflict and fragility. The leaders committed to addressing the intersection of climate change and security as an issue for foreign, defence and development policies.

That is the right approach. That is the way for developed countries to engage fragile states on adapting to climate change now, before they fall into chaos and become failed states. As the rest of the world marches forward with adapting to climate change, we should not leave fragile states behind.”