Environmental terrorism is an old type of conflict with a new face. Large, costly wars between two or more states have become less prevalent over the past 50 years, and with the end of the Cold War and the demise of the Soviet Union, there has been no bipolar superpower standoff to suppress the many ethnic, religious, and multipolar political and cultural tensions that motivate terrorist actions. Even the very nature of terrorism itself is changing. Attacks are becoming lethal to a greater number of people, as the events of September 11, 2001 demonstrated to the world. Most recent discussions of terrorism have focused on the identity of the terrorists, their motivations, and the increasingly destructive potential of the “weapons” at their disposal. However, to date, there has been relatively little discussion about their choice of targets. Environmental security scholars know that a strong argument can be made for linking certain resource and environmental problems with the prospects for political tension, or even war and peace. History shows that access to resources has been a proximate cause of war, resourceshave been both tools and targets of war, and environmental degradation and disparity in the distribution of resources can cause major political controversy, tension, and violence.
Environmental Impact does NOT equal risk
Auditing the new ISO 14001:2015: Environment Impacts does not equal Risk In recent transition audits, there has been one common misconception that I have seen repeated, and that is that environmental impacts are risks. This is not correct. Environmental impacts do not equal risk. Let’s start with the definition of environmental impact from the ISO 14001:2015 standard. “3.2.4 – environmental impact: change to the environment, whether adverse or beneficial, wholly or partially resulting...
Speaking the language of risk: climate change and the future of business
In an increasingly carbon-constrained economy, it is clear that an organization’s environmental, social and financial performance is dependent on climate action. The development of a thorough and goal-oriented sustainability program, one that integrates climate change impacts into risk management and takes into account the key role of private and public stakeholders, is critical to successful planning. At our Greener Horizons event in Vancouver, moderated by Nancy Wright of GLOBE Series, Bullfrog Power...
The Phase 1 Environmental Assessment
In today’s world where every property is subject to potential environmental risks a Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment or ESA is an appropriate action to take. An ESA can help determine if the property has been contaminated by previous or current activities. The ESA can help protect the purchaser of a property from environmental risks prior to the closing on a property. Lenders commonly require and ESA because it helps the lender determine if any environmental risks found could devalue the property or...
De Beers Victor Mine’s Failure to Report Mercury Risks Causes Serious Environmental Concerns
Mercury contamination from the De Beers diamond mine in northern Ontario may be much higher than the company — or the provincial government — are reporting, according to a new study by the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society’s Wildlands League. An investigation into one of world’s highest quality producing diamond mines has found failures in self-monitoring, raising troubling concerns about entrusting the company to protect the environment in which it operates. In a report being...
Beliefs, Politics, and Environmental Policy
IntroductionMany of us who work on environmental issues have faced the challenge of conveying their importance to nonspecialists. Perhaps we have found ourselves defending the robustness of climate science to a contrarian uncle, or extolling the importance of biodiversity to a dubious aunt. Our relations and friends are often educated people, skilled in their own professions, who have formed strong opinions about the science underlying environmental problems, their potential consequences for their own lives, and...