My story on climate change and national security ran in this morning’s paper. It gave me a chance to take a stab at explaining the idea of “no regrets” policies – climate change responses that are robust to the endless and apparently unsettleable argument in our political arena over the nature and causes of climate change:
One governmental response, favored by many, is to reduce the risk of climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
But another response, the Sandia group found, could be policies aimed at reducing the vulnerability of societies around the world to climate change.
That could have the advantage of helping regardless of whether the change is natural or human-caused. It could also include policies that would help in the absence of any climate change at all? sometimes called “no regrets” policies.
Helping poor, arid nations ensure adequate water supplies, for example, could help them respond to drought, whether it was natural or a response to greenhouse warming. But it could also help even if there isn’t a drought.