Climate Change: Considerations for Geographic Combatant Commands

  • Colonel Jason A Kirk

DoD’s Geographic Combatant Commands (GCCs) have the imperative to assess their Theater Campaign Plans in response to DoD’s recent 2014 Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap. As a “case-study” relevant to all GCCs this paper analyzes the risks and opportunities facing U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) in reviewing climate change impacts primarily in the Caribbean region of its Area of Operations. In coordination with and sometimes in support of Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development’s climate change actions, SOUTHCOM has the opportunity to bolster both its “humanitarian assistance/disaster relief” and “partner nation of choice” end-state objectives. SOUTHCOM and its interagency partners can employ leader engagements, technical support and various funding mechanisms to assist select partner nations in improving their climate change resiliency.