Climate Exercise Tests Resolve

26 June 2024

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The U.S. Department of the Navy (DON) is hosting a Climate Tabletop Exercise 25-26 June with Caribbean nations to identify areas of collaboration to increase climate resilience.

The DON convened role players from the Department of Defense, federal agencies, Caribbean climate resilience stakeholders, and the U.S. Interagency community to contribute their expertise to develop actions and strengthen partnerships between U.S. and Caribbean partner nations.

“The impacts of climate change, from increasing temperatures and droughts, to changing precipitation patterns and sea level rise, are impacting our forces, our communities, and economies,” said Meredith Berger, Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations, and Environment. “Island and coastal nations like our Caribbean neighbors are on the front lines of this challenge; we have much to learn from each other, and much to gain from working together to build our shared climate resilience and enhance our collective security.”

Over the past year, senior leaders from the Department of the Navy have convened several engagements with Caribbean leaders and technical experts, discussing the practical challenges and opportunities for collaboration in building climate resilience. The broader U.S. government has similarly expanded its climate action in the Caribbean, including the launch of the U.S. Caribbean Partnership to Address the Climate Crisis.

This tabletop exercise is the third in a series the Department of Navy has led in as many years focused on climate impacts. This year, it brings together Caribbean experts with U.S. agencies such as USAID, the Department of State, NOAA, the Department of Energy, and the Department of Defense, to explore practical climate resilience solutions across three key areas: Community Health and Safety, Infrastructure Resilience (to include energy, water, built and natural infrastructure), and Climate Research, Data, and Planning Tools.

The event will simulate an 18-month period characterized by weather events intensified by climate change, spanning two consecutive hurricane seasons. Scenarios will include unusually dry conditions leading to wildfires, high temperatures straining power grids and crop production, multiple hurricanes making landfall in quick succession, significant damage to critical infrastructure, and flooding and landslides causing extensive damage to power, telecommunications, transportation, airport, and seaport facilities, as well as communicable disease outbreaks post-hurricanes.

The scenario will allow for participants to identify specific opportunities where Caribbean nations and the U.S. can work together to build climate resilience and focus on preparedness ahead of a disaster.

The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps is focused on increasing climate resilience, reducing the climate threat, and remaining the world’s dominant maritime force.


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