Statement by Timothy E. Wirth, President, United Nations Foundation, on today’s debate in the Security Council on the impact of climate change on the maintenance of international peace and security:
“The Security Council was exactly right today to examine the relationship between climate change and security. Germany, which holds the presidency of the Security Council, should be commended for convening this debate.
“The heating of the planet, caused by pollution from oil and coal, is driving social, political, economic and ecological change, increasing the frequency of extreme weather events, and impairing food production around the globe. These impacts will have important implications for security in many regions of the world, and it is significant that they are recognized at the highest level of international affairs. National governments must now consider how best to respond in their own self-interest – in economic and security terms as well as environmental ones.”
Wirth served as Undersecretary of State for Global Affairs from 1993 to 1997. He represented Colorado in the U.S. House and Senate from 1974 to 1992.