Climate Change: A Homeland security matter. A Limerick.

Napolitano Says DHS to Begin Battling Climate Change as Homeland Security Issue

Friday, December 17, 2010
By J. Brady Howell
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano ( Starr)
( – At an all-day White House conference on “environmental justice,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced that her department is creating a new task force to battle the effects of climate change on domestic security operations.
Speaking at the first White House Forum on Environmental Justice on Thursday, Napolitano discussed the initial findings of the department’s recently created “Climate Change and Adaptation Task Force.”
Napolitano explained that the task force was charged with “identifying and assessing the impact that climate change could have on the missions and operations of the Department of Homeland Security.”
According to the former Arizona governor, the task force would address specific questions, including:
“How will FEMA work with state and local partners to plan for increased flooding or wildfire or hurricane activity that is more serious than we’ve seen before? What assistance can the Coast Guard bring to bear to assist remote villages in, for example, Alaska which already have been negatively affected by changes up in the Arctic?”
The findings from the Homeland Security Department (DHS) also asked: “(H)ow can we focus on how climate change is going to affect our rural citizenry including those who live along our borders both northern and southern?”

The conference did not define “environmental justice,” and the only reference to the task force that can be found is on the DHS Web site. The June 2010 Department of Homeland Security Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan states “climate change has the potential to accelerate and intensify extreme weather events which threaten the nation’s sustainability and security.”

The Limerick:

Homeland Security guards our peace,
But lumberjacks terrorize forests with ease.
Why in such a hurry?
I tell you, don’t worry.
With Carbon Dioxide we’ll grow some more trees.

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