Asia Pacific Maritime Security Climate Change Effect

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Asia Pacific Maritime Security Climate Change Effect

Asia Pacific Maritime Security Climate Change Effect


The risks posed by climate change are real and its impacts are already taking place. The UN estimates that all but one of its emergency appeals for humanitarian aid in 2007 was climate related. In 2007 the UN Security Council held its first debate on climate change and its implications for international security. The findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change demonstrate that even if by 2050 emissions would be reduced to below half of 1990 levels, a temperature rise of up to 2ºC above pre-industrial levels will be difficult to avoid. Such a temperature increase will pose serious security risks that would increase if warming continues.

Unmitigated climate change beyond 2ºC will lead to unprecedented security scenarios as it is likely to trigger a number of tipping points that would lead to further accelerated, irreversible and largely unpredictable climate changes. Investment in mitigation to avoid such scenarios, as well as ways to adapt to the unavoidable should go hand in hand with addressing the Asian Pacific security threats created by climate change; both should be viewed as part of preventive security policy . This report focuses on the impact of climate change on maritime security of the Asian pacific regions.


Intuitively at least environmental change has the potential to undermine human security. The degradation of resources can negatively affect the capacity of people to sustain their livelihoods. Accessibility to basic necessities such as food can be reduced by environmental change and there are widespread effects upon human health that can be linked directly to changes in the quality of the environment (Anthony 2003 , pp 88-124). Peoples' sense of security can be influenced also when resource exploitation and environmental change have impacts upon local communities, cultural norms and traditions, and socio-political structures. In some acute cases, the insecurities that arise from environmental change may lead to violent conflict (Cutter 2002, pp 529-539). .

Islands are Small Places

Asia-Pacific or APAC is that part of the world in or near the Western Pacific Ocean. The area includes much of East Asia, Southeast Asia, Australasia and Oceania). Sometimes the term Asia-Pacific includes South Asia, though India and its neighbors are on or near the Indian Ocean rather than the Pacific Ocean. Maritime security is of vital interest to Singapore and the region. There must be safe and secure measures most Asia-Pacific nations rely heavily on seaborne trade and commerce for their economic prosperity .

Geographically, the Pacific region is vast. It is the world's largest ocean, studded by thousands of islands, which are grouped into about 30 different political territories. Despite the small size of the individual islands, collectively the land area is greater than that of Western Europe. Individually, the island nations of the Pacific are small in terms of their geographic extent, their populations and the size of their economies (Mackensen 2004, pp ...
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