You didn't hear this from us: The Central Intelligence Agency is spending untold millions to study the national security threats presented by climate change. Now the Pentagon's Defense Science Board (DSB) is urging that another, new office be created to do the same job, for more untold millions. Why?
Because obsessive secrecy renders the work of the CIA's Center on Climate Change and National Security (CCCNS) useless to the government, the public, or the academic community. It's no secret that climate change threatens U.S. security. Just witness the 2010 Pakistan floods that threatened to push this nuclear-armed nation into Taliban control. But the CIA thinks national security requires the agency to refrain from telling the public what the public already knows.
The study recommends that the Director of National Intelligence "establish, within an appropriate agency of the Intelligence Community, an intelligence group to concentrate on the effects of climate change on political and economic developments and their implications for US national security." It seems that "appropriate" agencies do not include the CIA.
Is the CIA afraid that Osama bin Laden may find out about the climate threat? Probably not. More likely they are afraid of Sen. John Barasso (R-WY) and other powerful Republicans who have vowed to destroy the CCCNS because they don't believe humans are changing climate and don't want the federal government to try to stop it. The CCCNS is just one of 11 climate programs the Republicans hope to behead.
- "A New Intelligence Org on Climate Change Is Needed, DSB Says," Secrecy News (Federation of American Scientists), November 14, 2011, by Steven Aftergood.
- "The CIA's Weather Underground," Mother Jones, August 10, 2011, by Kate Sheppard.
- "CIA Urged To Be More Open About Climate Change," The Guardian, November 24, 2011, by Suzanne Goldenberg.
- "Climate Change Spy vs. Spy?" Mother Jones, November 15, 2011, by Kate Sheppard.
- "Trends and Implications of Climate Change for National and International Security," Defense Science Board Task Force on Trends and Implications of Climate Change for National and International Security, October 2011.
- Previous Story: WatchDog of Oct. 5, 2011.