NATO and Gulf partners boost scientific cooperation on security implications of climate change

  • 23 Apr. 2024 - 24 Apr. 2024
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  • Last updated: 24 Apr. 2024 19:32

The NATO-Istanbul Cooperation Initiative Regional Centre in Kuwait convened its second conference on climate change and security on 23-24 April 2024. The event brought together officials and experts to discuss the specific challenges faced by the region and share views on how to move international cooperation forward.

Last year, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg issued his second Climate Change and Security Impact Assessment. This included a section on NATO’s southern neighbourhood, one of the regions that bears the brunt of the climate crisis. NATO’s partners in the region continue to highlight climate change as a key security challenge, and as an area for greater cooperation with NATO. 

Against this backdrop, the NATO-ICI Regional Centre in Kuwait and the NATO Innovation, Hybrid and Cyber Division organised this second conference on climate change and security in the Gulf region. It builds on the experience of last year’s event – the first engagement of this kind between NATO and its ICI partner countries. Diplomats, military and government representatives, academics and students from the region engaged with experts on how climate change is affecting security, including through warmer temperatures on land and sea, rising sea levels and water scarcity. Experts stressed the potential for innovation and technology to address some of these challenges. NATO’s Science for Peace and Security (SPS) Programme ran an information session aimed at encouraging researchers and scientists in Istanbul Cooperation Initiative countries to develop collaborative research activities in thematic areas of interest to the SPS Programme, including those focussed on climate change and security.

There will be another opportunity to submit proposals to the SPS Programme this week. Details will be available on the SPS website. NATO’s third climate change and security impact assessment will be issued ahead of the next NATO Summit, which will take place this July in Washington D.C.