The country in the world with the largest landmass says that climate change is a hoax. What does that tell you? Also, when did Russia stop being the bad guys?
NEW YORK (AP) — Russia on Monday vetoed a first-of-its-kind U.N. Security Council resolution casting climate change as a threat to international peace and security, a vote that sank a years-long effort to make global warming a more central consideration for the U.N.’s most powerful body.
Spearheaded by Ireland and Niger, the proposal called for “incorporating information on the security implications of climate change” into the council’s strategies for managing conflicts and into peacekeeping operations and political missions, at least sometimes. The measure also asked the U.N. secretary-general to make climate-related security risks “a central component” of conflict prevention efforts and to report on how to address those risks in specific hotspots.
“It’s long overdue” that the U.N.’s foremost security-related body take up the issue, Irish Ambassador Geraldine Byrne Nason said.
The council has occasionally discussed the security implications of climate change since 2007, and the wider General Assembly pronounced itself “deeply concerned” about the issue in 2009. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has also sounded alarms, telling the Security Council last week that the effects of climate change “compound conflicts and exacerbate fragility.”
The council has passed resolutions that mention destabilizing effects of warming in specific places, such as various African countries and Iraq. But Monday’s resolution would have been the first devoted to climate-related security danger as an issue of its own.
Stronger storms, rising seas, more frequent floods and droughts and other effects of warming could inflame social tensions and conflict, potentially “posing a key risk to global peace, security and stability,” the proposed resolution said. Some 113 of the U.N.’s 193 member countries supported it, including 12 of the council’s 15 members.
But India and veto-wielding Russia voted no, while China abstained.