April 1, 2021

New Work | Climate: The Military Perspective

What does the Military think about the climate crisis?

Three-star general Lt Gen Richard Nugee, and two senior army personnel Lt Col Hugo Stanford-Tuck and Lt Col Damian Flanagan speak out about their understanding of the impacts of the climate crisis on their roles, but also their lives and families in this film we created with the UK MOD. 

As part of our strand of work getting noteworthy voices to speak on climate in unexpected places, we partnered with The Sun newspaper online and in print to distribute this, with the aim of catalysing conversation around climate, but also humanising the process of reacting to it. We’re all in this together and it’s great to see the MOD and Army taking this issue seriously and starting a process of reacting to what is happening to our world. 

‘There is a threat to our way of life through climate change, and we must do something about it’ says Richard Nugee, after the Armed Forces have seen a 60% increase of assistance to climate-related events in the last three years, including wildfires in the North of England and severe flooding in the South. 

As Lt Colonel Hugo Stanford-Tuck points out, that is not counting the UK’s overseas territories and international interests. Hugo explains that increased temperatures will play a threat multiplier to areas of conflict ‘higher temperatures means more violence’.

Lt Colonel Damien Flanagan suggests that ‘If environmental conditions become more volatile, the call for that from our military will only increase’. So what are they doing about it?

The Ministry of Defence, in response, is drawing up a report, and plans to make the sector carbon neutral by 2050 to aid the reduction of the UK’s carbon footprint. The report includes plans to make the Military’s land a net sequester and to ensure that all new equipment is as sustainable as possible. 

Want to read more about the plans Richard Nugee and his team at the Ministry of Defence have set out? Read the Ministry of Defence Climate Change and Sustainability Strategic Approach here.

More stories from unexpected places:

Health & Climate: The Lancet:

Richard Horton of The Lancet discusses why the climate emergency is “the most existential crisis facing our communities in the world today” and why taking action is “the duty of a doctor”.

Behind The Blue Line:

Meet the police officers who joined Extinction Rebellion and why did one of them get arrested? Watch to find out!

83 Year Old Rebel: 

Is this the world’s most badass Grandpa? Phil Kingston (83) engages in high stakes protesting on behalf of the planet’s future, armed with just a peanut butter sandwich.

Doctors in Rebellion: 

Meet the doctors raising the alarm about the climate and ecological emergency.