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Rep. Smith, others participate in climate change discussion

Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash, participated in a symposium of national and regional experts, who convened in Seattle for a discussion on climate change and national security.

The 36 leaders from federal agencies, state and local government, research organizations, businesses and academia, were all in agreement that climate change is having an impact on national security that will only increase with time, a press release stated.

“We can’t separate this out and say climate change is an energy problem and not a national security problem,” said Smith in the release.

The symposium was title “The Intersection of National Security and Climate Change – What do Decision-makers need to be prepared?”- and was organized by the Henry M. Jackson Foundation and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

It was based on research organizers found that indicates that changing rainfall patterns can undermine agricultural productivity and food security, leading to conflict.

“The workshop participants emphasized the urgency of addressing climate change and its impacts on our country’s national security and determined that it is critical to take immediate action,” said Alice Hill, White House senior advisor Preparedness and Resilience, in the release.

The group reports that participants also agreed that the military and other parts of the national security community, as well as state and local governments, business and industry and federal agencies can and should play a key role in defining and prioritizing what those actions should be.Organizers of the symposium plan to refine their recommendations and present them to a group of business and policy leaders in Washington, D.C. later this summer.

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