President Obama’s Memorandum on Climate Change and National Security


Statement from National Academy of Sciences President Marcia McNutt

Sept. 21, 2016


Today President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum to address climate change and national security. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine look forward to taking the lead in engaging the academic community in efforts to guide this initiative, and are well-positioned to tap the broad, multidisciplinary expertise of researchers across the nation.


As always, the Academies stand ready to advise the nation on important challenges, climate change being one of the most pressing of our time. Several past Academies reports have highlighted ways that changing climate conditions pose risks to U.S. national security and the importance of enhancing coordination among the many experts and stakeholders working on these challenges. We welcome the opportunity to work with our federal partners to mobilize the research community so that they can best contribute.


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Upcoming event:


The Academies are organizing a public webinar that will include briefings about the new initiative and discussions of how the academic community can participate in activities going forward. If you would like to participate in the webinar, please register to receive details about it as soon as they are available.


Relevant reports from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine:


Opportunities to Improve Representation of Clouds and Aerosols in Climate Models with Classified Observing Systems: Proceedings of a Workshop: Abbreviated Version (2016)

Climate Intervention: Carbon Dioxide Removal and Reliable Sequestration and Climate Intervention: Reflecting Sunlight to Cool Earth (2015)

Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change: Anticipating Surprises (2013)

Sea-Level Rise for the Coasts of California, Oregon, and Washington: Past, Present, and Future (2012)

Security Implications of Social Stress from Climate Change (2012)

National Security Implications of Climate Change for U.S. Naval Forces (2011)


The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine are private, nonprofit institutions that provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions related to science, technology, and medicine. They operate under an 1863 congressional charter to the National Academy of Sciences, signed by President Lincoln. For more information, visit



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