Included in the Group of Experts report on the new NATO concept, I could read the usual sentence that any politician should use, in order to be sure that he will not be to much contested: “In the current day, uncertainty is magnified by such factors as: … the accumulating consequences of environmental degradation, including climate change”.
Great. And so what? Should the military transform their armoured brigades in Green brigades in charge of protecting Amazonia, should the USA change their nuclear submarines into offshore control service? Nobody will ever propose anything concrete on this topic. The only countries that may adapt their tools are countries for which internal policy is driven by ecology and that have no ambition as for foreign policy refers.
I mean those countries in which the military action can be showed only when the military is taking care of children in a Third World village, and most important, is in no case involved in combat operations. More precisely, as war is a bad and dirty thing, those armies which are conceived to have in any circumstance the role of the good guy, while larger powers are the bad guys who make use of their weapons.
However, nobody will deny the need for the defence forces to contribute to defence of environment, by patrolling in their waters to check the tankers, or cleaning the beaches when polluted. In any case, that is not new: since the 19th century (at least) armies contributes to all those tasks, for instance by giving a hand for the crop, cleaning the beaches of Brittany in the 70’s, or fighting against the flood in Germany in the 90’s.
Therefore, my conclusion is such statements belong to the pure political correctness and the best proof of the report, is that it does not really give a clue of the way to adapt our defence systems to environment protection.