Experts discuss climate change, national security link at ASU event

Nov 10, 2017, 4:10 AM




LISTEN: Climate change and how it effects national security

PHOENIX — A group of experts at Arizona State University discussed how climate change is reshaping the energy industry, military, government and economy at a panel discussion on Thursday.

Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Norman Seip was among the panelists at the ASU Global Security Initiative event.

Seip said units in Afghanistan are beginning to use renewable energy in their effort to man certain bases.

But Army Ofc. Natalie Maleu, who attended the event, said battery technology for certain devices, including high-tech weapons, gun sights and radios, pose a problem because they lack a standardized power source and add weight to a soldier’s pack.

However, Dr. Gary Dirks with the university’s Global Institute of Sustainability said the days of government involvement in energy technology are coming to an end as the energy industry works to close that gap.

“Without a doubt, we entering now into an era where [fossil fuel alternatives] are going to be competitive and we’re not going to need a lot more government support,” he said. “Now the question is just how fast is it going to go?”

Dirks, also a former executive with British Petroleum, said the entire energy industry is being remade by onrushing technological advances.

He cited an example where Google Energy used its own artificial intelligence to slash its power consumption bills by 40 percent.

Dirks said the technology evaluates and makes energy-saving decisions by the minute — something humans are not capable of.

However, many panel members said they felt President Donald Trump made a crucial mistake by withdrawing from the Paris Climate Accord, an international pact to fight climate change.

Leaving the accord isolated the U.S. from companies that are working on new energy solutions, the panel concluded.

That has left cities, counties and states working to implement their own alternative energy programs to fill the void left by the Trump administration’s exit, the group said.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Ability360 Photo)...

Ability360 works to support independent living for those with disabilities

KTAR's community spotlight this month focuses on a Valley business that offers various services to those living with disabilities.

20 hours ago

Editorial members of the Austin American-Statesman's Austin NewsGuild picket along the Congress Ave...

Associated Press

Hundreds of journalists strike to demand leadership change at biggest US newspaper chain

Journalists at two dozen local newspapers across the U.S. walked off the job Monday to demand an end to painful cost-cutting measures and a change of leadership at Gannett, the country's biggest newspaper chain.

20 hours ago

(Unsplash Photo)...

2 young children hospitalized in critical condition following crash in Glendale

Two young children and a total of five people were hospitalized in critical condition Monday following a multivehicle crash in Glendale.

20 hours ago

(Facebook Photo/Quantá for AZ)...

Quantá Crews selected to replace Flavio Bravo in Arizona House

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors appointed Quantá Crews on Monday to replace Flavio Bravo in the Arizona House.

20 hours ago

File phot of the back of a Phoenix, Arizona, police officer. The Phoenix Police Department unveiled...

Kevin Stone

Phoenix Police Department unveils strategic plan to reduce crime

The Phoenix Police Department on Monday unveiled a strategic plan that takes a community and victim-centered approach to reducing crime.

20 hours ago

Booking photo of Raul Perez Ochoa and a file photo of a Gilbert Police Department cruise. Ochoa, an...

East Valley massage therapist accused of sexual offenses

An East Valley massage therapist accused of sexual offenses was arrested last week, and police are looking for more possible victims.

20 hours ago

Sponsored Articles



Why drug-free weight loss still matters

Wanting to lose weight is a common goal for many people as they progress throughout life, but choosing between a holistic approach or to take medicine can be a tough decision.

(Photo by Michael Matthey/picture alliance via Getty Images)...

Cox Communications

Valley Boys & Girls Club uses esports to help kids make healthy choices

KTAR’s Community Spotlight focuses on the Boys & Girls Club of the Valley and the work to incorporate esports into children's lives.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Company looking for oldest air conditioner and wants to reward homeowner with new one

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

Experts discuss climate change, national security link at ASU event