Gizmodo: US Should Demilitarise and Withdraw to Reduce CO2 Emissions

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

According to Gizmodo, as the USA switches away from fossil fuel there will no longer be a need for a US military presence in global hotspots.

Climate Change Can’t Be an Excuse for More Militarisation

Dharna Noor

Published 1 day ago: January 29, 2021 at 5:14 am-Filed to: BUSINESS_FINANCE

On Wednesday, U.S. President Joe Biden signed a suite of executive orders on climate policy, including one that enshrines climate change as a key consideration for American foreign policy and national security.

But though the climate crisis is not the fault of any single person or entity, it is not exactly actorless. The U.S. is responsible for more historical greenhouse gas pollution than any other country, and is currently the second largest emitter after China. The country’s military is the largest institutional greenhouse gas polluter in the world and largest consumer of fossil fuels in the federal government, using as much oil and gas as the entire country of the Netherlands.

Neta Crawford, a political scientist at Boston University who authored a groundbreaking 2019 report on the military’s gargantuan carbon footprint, said the directive is “a good first step.” But ultimately, the Department of Defence must make bolder moves to draw down emissions.

“We have to demilitarize,” she said.

“Climate change can lead to conflict and war, but war, we know, also promotes climate change,” she said. “So we can’t fight climate change as a threat with more and more military spending, [leading to] more greenhouse gas emissions from the military.”

If more resources are allocated for the Department of Defence specifically, there is also the question of accountability.

He noted that the Pentagon has failed several budget audits in recent years, and that the Department of Defence has a history of misallocating funds to simply increase military supplies. For instance, in March, the Pentagon received $US1 ($1) billion from the nation’s covid-19 stimulus bill to respond to the pandemic, but it diverted most of those funds to defence contractors to produce items such as parts for jet engines and armour.

Integrating climate concerns into foreign policy, Crawford said, should include letting go of the use of force to protect fossil fuels for American use. As the country increases its renewable energy capacity, it should lower its use of oil. That would decrease the need for military operations to safeguard it abroad in places like the Middle East. This would not only avoid the carbon pollution caused by using that oil, it would also avoid the emissions associated with the aircrafts and tanks used in guarding it.

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What I love about this kind of academic fantasy is they talk about their vision of a future in which the USA no longer needs an overseas military presence in the Persian Gulf and other hotspots as if it was a near term certainty, as if the USA can start withdrawing from vital energy trade routes right now.

It will be interesting to see how the Biden administration responds to this idea of climate motivated military drawdown. The Obama administration started lots of wars. If Biden follows in Obama’s footsteps, the Pentagon might need to order a lot more of those replacement jet engines and armour.

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January 29, 2021 10:04 pm

I like to see brave political scientists (not a real Science, btw) understanding so much about climate and CO2. She probably even know what the O2 is doing with the C.

Reply to  Pauleta
January 29, 2021 10:05 pm

*doesn’t even know …

January 29, 2021 11:01 pm

This is so ridiculous.

Biden is shutting down USA fossil fuel supply….

…. meaning those fuels will have to come from elsewhere.

That will mean an increased need for military power..

Whoever this “Noor” person is, it certainly does not have a rational thought in its cranium.

Reply to  fred250
January 30, 2021 12:06 am

Dementia Joe is doing what his handlers tell him to. Nothing more.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
January 30, 2021 12:38 am

You are so right. Obama and his handlers are running Joey. If you don’t think so look at the orders he is issuing. He is perpetuating the Obama agenda.

Reply to  geo
January 30, 2021 5:11 am

It’s easier than that. Susan Perpetual Liar Rice, John Lurch Kerry, Jen nothing to see here Psaki, and so many other are Obama Admin loyalists to keep their old boss apprised of Dementia Joe’s decline, activities, ramblings, and briefings.

John Tillman
Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
January 30, 2021 10:11 am

Ron Klain.

Reply to  geo
January 31, 2021 10:08 am

Hey, just because it really didn’t work the first time, that doesn’t mean that, uh, you know, the thing.

Reply to  max
January 31, 2021 1:46 pm

Now now. Just like true communism, it never worked before because we didn’t try hard enough. But THIS time, we have all the answers. Onward, Comrades!!!1!

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
January 30, 2021 1:42 am

China Joe. CCP making its move for world domination.

Ron Long
Reply to  fred250
January 30, 2021 2:11 am

Dharna Noor has a Liberal Arts Degree, in Political Science and singing, from Sarah Lawrence College. She discovered her life calling directly out of college and has advanced (?) the issues of climate change with some notable productions. She is actually a society leper who has never produced anything positive for her fellow humans ever, and never will.

Reply to  Ron Long
January 30, 2021 5:41 am

Why does the USA breed so many f***wits?

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  mikee
January 30, 2021 6:20 am

Because the UK, Australia and New Zealand are full and can’t breed any more?

Reply to  mikee
January 31, 2021 2:21 am

Because the USA is affluent. Only affluent nations can afford to educate large numbers of children to become f***wits. Poorer societies cannot afford the luxury of producing as many f***wits.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  mikee
January 31, 2021 5:24 am

Are you sure she was born in the USA? Maybe she’s from your country. Ever think about that?

Reply to  Tom Abbott
January 31, 2021 11:01 pm

Don’t worry. The response down under is the creation of the “morons are us scheme”. Dedicated to the later day saints of gorebull warming.

Reply to  mikee
January 31, 2021 1:48 pm

Economies of scale.

Mark F.
Reply to  Ron Long
January 30, 2021 9:21 am

Dharna Noor, despite her “Sub-Continent” name, seems to have been raised in Baltimore. So why is she using British English? “Department of Defence”? When my partners and I were working on a resupply bid for the Botswana military, we were savaged a couple of times when one partner referred to the “Botswana Defense Force” in e-mail messages.

Reply to  Mark F.
January 31, 2021 2:25 am

The Department of Defence is the actual name of that government body. If it is “British English”, then that is due to it a carry-over from the early post-colonial days when the DoD was created.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Analitik
January 31, 2021 5:30 am

“British English” is used in the title.

“Climate Change Can’t Be an Excuse for More Militarisation”

American English spells it this way: Militarization.

Doc Chuck
Reply to  Mark F.
January 31, 2021 10:36 pm

Noor is Arabic for ‘light’ (though not as you might suspect here as in light weight) though in this case the apparent luminosity is of a rather dim bulb. But she’s a modern college graduate which will leave little by way of residual cranial powers, so it would seem cruel to spoil her literally disarming dream that all will be well with the application of a little conflict resolution. And do pass the brie and chablis.

January 29, 2021 11:17 pm

Speaking of CO2, I read where there are thousands of coal seam fires burning around the world at any given time, most naturally occurring, and they put out ~ 3% of total CO2.

Now, iirc, human CO2 is also ~ 3% I believe, so if the military applied their resources to extinguishing these fires, we would have totally negated CO2 from human activities.

But then what would the establishment do for scare tactics?

Reply to  Mr.
January 29, 2021 11:57 pm

you seem to not know what a military is for like Dumb Dharna.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
January 30, 2021 9:48 am

When I was a (very reluctant) soldier, we blew stuff up.
Sometimes a whole hillside.
Just like Red Adair did with oil well fires.
Is that military enough?

Reply to  Mr.
January 31, 2021 7:22 pm

I bet you don’t know why explosives put out well fires.

Reply to  Mr.
January 30, 2021 8:20 am

You really need to read up a bit on coal seam fires. It takes a lot more than just wanting to put one out, to put one out.

Reply to  MarkW
January 30, 2021 10:00 am

I get that.
But then again if those jobs are just left to the local county fire departments, they probably don’t have enough fire power, if you get my meaning.

Plus, many are located in Darkest Africa and other exotic places that are yet to host a CoP conference.

To extinguish these fires, I’m thinking military engineers executing projects on a scale of the Suez and Panama Canals combined. And throw in Ripple Rock.

Richard Page
Reply to  Mr.
January 30, 2021 1:32 pm

Perhaps if you had a go at the ones in Pennsylvania and Colorado first then, once you put those out you could apply your expert knowledge to other countries?

Reply to  Mr.
January 31, 2021 7:27 pm

Once again you are demonstrating that you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. If you think the only reason they don’t put out coal seam fires is because they don’t have the man power, than you have no idea what a coal seam fire involves.
There is no way to put out such a fire.
You can’t put water on it for two reasons. You can’t get to it and it’s so hot it would disassociate the hydrogen from the oxygen if you did manage to put water on it.
You can’t dig it up because that would allow more oxygen to get to the fire and make it burn even hotter. Additionally, even if you did manage to dig up a portion of the fire, all that would happen is that the portion you dug up would burn up, and the fire would then proceed back underground.
You can’s seal it up, because ground is just too porous.

Please spend a few minutes studying up on a subject before you start going around telling other people they don’t know what they are doing.

Reply to  Mr.
January 30, 2021 6:15 pm

There is an underground coal fire in PA, the Centralia fire in more or less the center-east part of the state. It’s been burning since at least 1962. It started through a muck up by the local town board. It burnt its way into the Lehigh Valley Coal mine, eventually shutting it down. The fire is still burning over a stretch about 1/2-3/4 miles wide and about 8 miles long. It burns as far as 300 ft down. It follows old coal mine tunnels, and has burned whole seams of coal(talk about CO2!). Engineers figure it could burn completely across the valley and up the other side before hopefully burning to a stop. It did start high up on the western side of the valley.
This fire has had many plans and efforts to stop it with no effect. The odd thing is that water in the coal actually causes chemical reactions similar to those used to produce oil from coal(Germany, WW-II). Other fire control chemicals are much more expensive and also generate noxious fumes.

Coal Mine fires are going to be with us for a long time. They are rare in active mines because the constant activity almost always ensures the fire is detected when it is small and can be stopped.

Reply to  Mr.
January 30, 2021 8:58 pm

I should have added –
we don’t actually have to put these fire out, just SAY we’re PLANNING to put them out by 2050, and hey presto – we’ve met the Paris target and held warming to (pick your preferred number).

After all, this is how the whole climate combat video game works these days.

January 29, 2021 11:18 pm

US now gets an unimpressive 2.6% of its energy needs from weather dependent generators.

The simple solution to reduce reliance on fossil fuel it to reduce total energy demand by some 80% or so. Biden appears to be making all the right moves to achieve this objective.

US is fortunate to be the global banker so is in the unique position of never needing to be concerned about its net foreign debt. However I can see that buying elections will become more competitive as other nations build USD backed reserves and look for a way to invest wisely. China won the 2020 election with just USD106bn; about 10% of their holding in US bonds. Japan is in a position to easily outbid China. So GOP know what they need to do for the next round. In fact Taiwan could even be a player in the next election. I think Hong Kong is a lost cause but would have been worth pursuing for 2020.

Reply to  RickWill
January 30, 2021 12:04 am

HongKong is gone … under the CCP boot, like Tibet. Taiwan is next on Xi’s list. And it’s a long list, be assured of that.
Keeping 1.5 Billion people fed doesn’t happen with diplomacy.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
January 30, 2021 1:43 am

I’m surprised Taiwan is not shopping for AA missiles and fighter jets.

Reply to  Chaswarnertoo
January 30, 2021 5:15 am

Trump sold them 400 Harpoon antiship missiles, 125 SLAM-ER missiles for their F-16. President Xi was mighty pissed at that, and I have no doubt Beijing Joe will try to cancel the deliveries if he can. That is after-all what Beijing was paying for when they gave Hunter $10million in 2016.

Climate believer
Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
January 30, 2021 7:30 am

China creep on the Indian border too.

Richard Page
Reply to  Climate believer
January 30, 2021 7:47 am

It’s a bit of a relic of British rule in India, unfortunately. Trouble is that the areas in question are pretty remote but both sides have a reluctance to lose prestige from backing down. It’s a situation that won’t be resolved quickly or easily.

January 29, 2021 11:50 pm

Good idea. Become totally dependent on foreign oil and demilitarize. Putin and Xi must be paying off the useful idiots at Gizmodo. If they aren’t getting paid to be shills for the Communist dictatorships, then they really are morons. At least Hunter and Joe’s bro were intelligent enough and got rich selling out the US to China.
To realize Dharna has at least a 4 year degree AND is that stupid tells us why Dementia Joe is president.

Last edited 1 year ago by joelobryan
January 30, 2021 12:04 am

I’m sure the Chinese are all in favour of this idiocy.

January 30, 2021 12:15 am

“So we can’t fight climate change as a threat with more and more military spending, [leading to] more greenhouse gas emissions from the military.”

Ironically the GS Callandar archives (father of the modern CO2 theory) show that during WW2 there was often a big problem in England with fog thereby preventing allied bombers from taking off and landing ion their missions to Germany.

His solution was to site braziers around the airfields, fill them with petrol and when it was needed to clear the fog set fire to the fuel, with the result the fog was burnt off. Apparently it was pretty effective.


Reply to  tonyb
January 30, 2021 4:45 pm

The thing that is very important about G.S. Callendar (not Callandar) is his publication in 1938 in the Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorogical Society, “The artificial production of carbon dioxide” are his conclusions:

“In conclusion it may be said that the combustion of fossil fuel,
whether it be peat from the surface or oil from 10,000 feet below,
is likely to prove beneficial to mankind in several ways, besides the
provision of heat and power. For instance the above mentioned
small increases of mean temperature would be important at the
northern margin of cultivation, and the growth of favourably
situated plants is directly proportional to the carbon dioxide
pressure (Brown and Escombe, 1905): In any case the return of
the deadly glaciers should be delayed indefinitely.
As regards the reserves of fuel these would be sufficient to give
at least ten times as much carbon dioxide as there is in the air
at present.”

Reply to  tonyb
January 31, 2021 7:32 pm

It was a combination of heat from the fires and turbulence caused by the rising air from the fires that evaporated the fog. It had nothing to do with CO2.

Reply to  MarkW
February 1, 2021 12:10 am

Nonsense. You have NOTHING for us to read about this. No link NOTHING.

January 30, 2021 12:16 am

The US doesn’t get oil and natural gas from the Gulf now, does it? So its not a vital energy resource and withdrawing has no US energy implications… unless its protecting the investment of US energy firms??

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  griff
January 30, 2021 9:27 am

Maybe you just missed the news Griff but Biden is moving fast to constrain USA oil supply, which means right back to dependency on the ME

Any switch to EVs will take decades, that is a fact, constraining the American fracking boom means a higher world price for oil, it could not favor Russia more if Putin wrote it himself

But Biden will also increase the value of canadian oil and stock including especially oilsands

So every cloud has a silver lining

Boom times coming outside the usa

Richard Page
Reply to  Pat from kerbob
January 30, 2021 1:38 pm

Boom times coming outside the USA. Except for the countries that switched to buying US gas and oil exports of course. Based on the fact that the US was a stable and reliable producer that wouldn’t just switch off supply on a political whim like Russia might, for example.

Reply to  griff
January 30, 2021 2:25 pm

You are an Idiot, griff.

If you shut down fracking in the USA , as the democrat marxist totalitarians want to do..

of course oil will have to come from other sources.

Why do you continue to post so much arrant tripe and BS in every post you make ?

Nobody can be as IGNORANT and STUPID as you come across in your posts !

Reply to  griff
January 30, 2021 2:27 pm

Chinese troll?

Reply to  Lrp
January 30, 2021 6:28 pm

Griff pops in and out, doesn’t stay for the show.

Reply to  griff
January 30, 2021 6:27 pm

Currently companies are pumping 1.6-1.8 million barrels of oil a day.
Natural gas production as dropped steadily to 100,000 million cu.ft./day

That’s 15% of US oil and 3% or so of dry natural gas.
A mere pittance, Griff, I’m sure you will agree.

Reply to  griff
January 31, 2021 7:33 pm

The US doesn’t get oil and natural gas from the Gulf now, does it?

Is there anything you know that is actually true?
The Gulf is one of the major producers of oil and gas for both the US and Mexico.

January 30, 2021 12:44 am

As i have highlighted previously long term decisions that impact a nation need to be thought through.
Decided to ban ice and go battery without first securing the raw materials is really dumb

January 30, 2021 12:50 am

As I child I remember the US Navy push for more ships to combat the USSR.
By the end of the cold war the US had about 6 times more ships than the USSR.
I consider the vast overkill in Navy spending was not wasted. I think it has played a major role in keeping world peace

John Tillman
Reply to  Waza
January 30, 2021 10:24 am

The US Navy had about half as many ships in 1990 as the Soviet Navy, but ours were on average bigger and in better condition, plus we had more and better aircraft.

The Soviets did have the biggest and more numerous subs.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Tillman
Reply to  Waza
January 30, 2021 3:19 pm

Thanks John you are correct.
I should have been more clear.
It was my understanding the the ussr had the operational equivalent to one carrier fleet while the USA had six.
This allowed “power projection” which IMO is a major reason we have world peace.
It is clear this is what China is aiming to do.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Waza
January 31, 2021 5:42 am

I remember when Reagan was wanting to increase the number of U.S. navy ships to 650.

I think the U.S. has less than 300 today. We need to increase our ship building, but that probably won’t happen under a Biden administration. He’ll probably try to cut the defense budget and spend the money on windmills.

Reply to  john
January 30, 2021 8:47 am

Substantively there was nothing wrong with Legates and Maue’s essays. But not following protocol for anyone in government is grounds for demotion/dismissal.

Paul Penrose
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
January 30, 2021 11:56 am

But in typical swamp fashion, these rules are not applied evenly.

January 30, 2021 5:45 am

If only the United States had a president who was trying to reduce the US military in foreign countries … Oh wait, the swamp just removed such a president.

January 30, 2021 5:57 am

Gish. I’ve heard the demilitarize part somewhere before. Oh, TRUMP was bringing troops HOME because we became energy self-sufficient and because occupying other countries was a bad thing to begin with.
Trump was right. Go ahead say it. It will make you feel better.

Reply to  bluecat57
January 30, 2021 6:55 am

They can’t bluecat57. Orangeman makes them feel badly and that is what it is all about. I have seen fairly well balanced friends become unbalanced friends when taking about Trump. One friend said he doesn’t like how Trump treats women and then in the work hallways he was the “look at the big t*ts on her” guy. Another said he couldn’t stand Trump’s ego and when this guy spoke you knew you were in the presence of golf greatness. Another go said Trump was so mean and then he would go and talk about how he belittle his brother in law at the cabin.

Reply to  Derg
January 30, 2021 7:40 am

One question I can NOT get an answer to:

What EXACTLY has Trump DONE that harms YOU personally?

Most people hate Trump’s style and can’t see the good things he does because of their hate.

Well the headlines are daily identifying the “Buyer’s Remorse” of those that voted for Biden (60 million legal votes + 20 million illegal ones) instead of Trump (80 million legal votes – 5 million stolen ones).

Even those that claim to “know” Trump still try to MEASURE him based on THEIR worldview instead of trying to UNDERSTAND what he is DOING based on HIS worldview.

As for “grab ’em”, I used to hit the bars with men much richer than me and I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve seen that happen in real life. And I had a friend I would hang out with on weeknights at his pad and around 10 pm most nights he would get a “booty call” from a variety of women. He was definitely a “Player”.

You many not like how the world works, but that doesn’t make the FACTS wrong.

Reply to  bluecat57
January 31, 2021 7:37 pm

Trump’s style drove me crazy as well. I personally felt that he would have been more effective if he could have just kept his yap shut more of the time.
However most of his policies were good.
(As Neil Boortz likes to say, if two people agree on everything, one of them is redundant.)

Reply to  MarkW
February 1, 2021 6:55 am

I miss Boortz. I too am willing to call the baby ugly.
Any chance you recall a joke he told about a trailer skirt salesman? Would have been around 2002 to maybe 2005.

Richard Page
January 30, 2021 7:52 am

Every time there is a discussion involving any part of the military, some left wing activist makes the call for complete demilitarisation for one reason or another. Not the first time and won’t be the last but some very interesting uses of climate activist propaganda. Do we really ‘know’ that conflict causes climate change? How bizarre.

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  Richard Page
January 30, 2021 9:08 am

WW2 was an “unprecedented” explosion of hydrocarbon burning/CO2 creation such as the world has ever seen, a step jump from the 30’s
And the world temp reduced until the end of the 70s.

So, “make war, reduce climate change”

Richard Page
Reply to  Pat from kerbob
January 30, 2021 9:47 am

Oh, I see now. The climate activists are cherry picking a single conflict with a unique set of circumstances and extrapolating a case for all conflicts to have the same characteristics. Got it.

January 30, 2021 8:17 am

If the US would just stop opposing the advance of global socialism, all of the world’s problems would disappear.
At least that’s what those who support global socialism tell us to believe.

Richard Page
Reply to  MarkW
January 30, 2021 9:50 am

And of course they are correct – under socialist rule, all the world’s problems do disappear. No one dares to point them out for fear that they, too, will disappear! sarc.

January 30, 2021 10:27 am

Idiocracy was a documentary.

Jon Salmi
January 30, 2021 12:03 pm

My first thought on reading this screed was, wait a minute it is not April 1st yet. My second thought was that if this kind of thinking comes to dominate, within 4 to 8 years America will become China’s Easternmost province. Good Lord, this kind of thinking is scary.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Jon Salmi
January 31, 2021 5:47 am

“Good Lord, this kind of thinking is scary.”

This is what they teach in American colleges today.

Walter Sobchak
January 30, 2021 1:06 pm

The US should get out of the Middle East. We should leave the Persian Gulf to somebody else. I assume it will fall to the Chinese to keep it going. Better them than us.

The author reached the right conclusion for the wrong reason.

Richard Page
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
January 30, 2021 1:45 pm

It won’t be China. Turkey has been making moves towards being a big player in the region as have the Israeli’s and the Saudi’s in partnership. Whatever the reasons for getting involved were, if the US turns it’s back and walks away it’ll be a mess. Do you really want that mess to be sorted out by Russia, for example?

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  Richard Page
January 30, 2021 2:04 pm

The world is full of messes. The US is not responsible for them. Let the Russians sort out the Middle East Mess. It is no skin off our back.

Reply to  Walter Sobchak
January 31, 2021 7:40 pm

And when Russia controls most of the world’s oil supply and tells everyone to stop trading with the US, otherwise their oil supply is cut off?

February 4, 2021 11:51 am

Another excellent argument for eliminating ‘higher’ education.

Kevin Stall
February 5, 2021 7:05 am

If anything, hrer idea would simply change the battle ground from middle east to Central Africa. Where the rare earth minerals. Do we really want to fight in the Congo?
Alternative energy is simple a supplement. Not able to be a primary source of energy as shown in Australia and california. You need to have a constant, unvaring energy supply, not one that is constantly changing. With wind and solar you do not have the same level second by second. Modern electrical device require a constant level not varying levels. Surging will harm or destroy modern electrical equipment.

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