Analysis & Foresight
The climate crisis is one of the most serious risks to global peace and stability in the 21st century. Failure to understand and address interacting climate and conflict risks will undermine the sustainability of both peace and climate policies.
Weathering Risk unites state-of-the-art climate impact data and expert conflict analysis to promote peace and resilience in a changing climate. Our multilateral initiative is developing analysis, tools and trainings grounded in geographically and thematically focused climate security risk assessments. With these, we facilitate risk-informed planning, enhance capacity for action and improve operational responses that promote climate resilience and peace.
Innovative climate data and state-of-the-art quantitative methods, such as causal inference and machine learning, identify current and future impacts of climate change and help improve understanding of when and how these threaten peace and security. This is combined with on-the-ground qualitative research at different scales and from diverse geographies to build up a comprehensive analysis of compound climate and security risks.
We draw on collaborations with multiple UN agencies and multilateral organisations to produce locally and contextually grounded analysis focused on select regions, such as Mali, the Arab States Region, and the Pacific. The resulting outputs are tailored to stakeholders across the diplomacy, development, defence, humanitarian aid and climate communities. For example, our Mali analysis supports UN agencies and offers specific guidance for the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).
However, the initiative is not limited to certain geographies, but provides policymakers and implementers with an easily applicable methodology to conduct their own analyses of climate-linked conflicts.
Weathering Risk turns strategic uncertainty into manageable risk and contributes to informed decision making. We identify the right questions to ask and how to make use of the available information.
Our focus lies on enhancing capacity for action, improving risk informed planning, and advancing operational responses. We closely link our work to international processes such as UNFCC COPs, G7 and UN Security Council meetings. The first Weathering Risk policy paper, for example, offers five steps donors and governments should take to deliver on the climate-security agenda.
Our replicable assessment methodology is being used by peacebuilding partners on the ground in Somalia and will be included in the new UN Resident Coordinators handbook. We are also working with national intelligence experts to develop a strategic foresight game using our risk analysis. The game will help high-level decision makers formulate strategies that respond to climate security risks in a given mission setting, supporting a deeper understanding of the issue as well as what action on the ground would look like.
Weathering Risk works to convene, connect, and bolster the growing community of practice on Climate Security. Using our analysis to inform the discourse, we initiate timely, politically pertinent discussions, for example the Climate Security in 3D dialogue series and the first ever ministerial roundtable on climate and security at COP26 in Glasgow. To support the translation of dialogue to action, we draw on our analysis to develop tailored trainings that support policymakers and implementing partners in integrating climate security risk analysis into strategic and operational processes.
Most important to me is that the initiative is also aimed at identifying concrete entry points for political and preventive action such as improving early warning systems and our early response capabilities, as well as strengthening the resilience of vulnerable sectors and institutions.
Antje Leendertse, State Secretary, German Federal Foreign Office
In 2022, the United Nations and Haiti’s Ministry of the Environment took the initiative to establish the Haiti Climate Security Working Group, bringing together UN agencies, international organisations, Haitian government institutions and civil society organisations. To help guide the work of this group, adelphi led a collaborative effort to undertake a study mapping out the linkages between climate, peace and security in Haiti, applying the methodology of the Weathering Risk initiative. This policy brief presents some of the key findings of the study and proposes a new approach with an explicit focus on climate and peacebuilding, and with inclusion at its heart, to help address Haiti’s climate security challenges.
The new Pacific Climate Security Assessment guide aims to support Pacific Island Countries to collectively and individually uncover, assess and respond to climate security implications for their peoples, prosperity and peace. The Assessment Guide builds off of the Weathering Risk initiative’s methodology, and was undertaken by adelphi in collaboration with the UNDP, IOM and PIF as a part of the UNPBF funded “Climate Security in the Pacific” project.
This study explores the effects of climate impacts such as extreme heat and water stress as risks to peace and human security in the Somali Region of Ethiopia. It identifies five key climate insecurity pathways as well as entry points and priorities as guidance for future climate- and conflict-sensitive, peace-oriented programming in the region.