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Contemporary Security Studies

Contemporary Security Studies (5th edn)

Alan Collins
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date: 29 September 2023

p. 23516. Environmental Securitylocked

p. 23516. Environmental Securitylocked

  • Jon Barnett
  •  and Geoff Dabelko


This chapter examines the concept of environmental security, focusing on how it has both broadened and deepened the issue of security. It first traces the origins of environmental security, showing that it is the product of a merger of international environmental agreements, efforts by the peace movement to contest the meaning and practice of security, the proliferation of new security issues in the post-Cold War era, recognition that environmental changes pose grave risks to human well-being, and the growing community of research practice that seeks to build peace through natural resource management. The chapter goes on to consider the different meanings of environmental security, along with four major categories of environmental security problem: how environmental change can be a factor in violent conflict or a risk to national security, how war and preparation for war can damage the environment, and how environmental change can pose a risk to human security.

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