The Edge of Climate Change
|Jim Kouri||November 29th 2012|
More than three years later, and after spending billions of taxpayer dollars, an Inside-the-Beltway watchdog group reported on Tuesday that President Barack Obama ordered the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to quietly shutdown its example of government waste and duplication: the Center on Climate Change and National Security.
The scandal-plagued government agency responsible for providing national security intelligence to senior U.S. policymakers, the military, homeland security officials and law enforcement operated an insignificant special unit that focused on global warming, according to a watchdog group that's proudly been a thorn in the side of the Obama White House.
Regardless of the fact that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had already possessed a multi-billion dollar intelligence center for global warming, a new report by public-interest group Judicial Watch's blog claims that the Obama administration believed the nationâ€™s intelligence community needed yet another taxpayer-funded entity to better determine the impact of climate change on U.S. national security."This waste of money is even more shameful when you consider millions and millions of Americans out of work or losing their homes and here's 'Mr. Green Jeans' Obama spending money to duplicate what's already being done by his own government and the private sector," said political consultant Mike Baker.
It was just a few years ago that the CIA opened its top-secret global warming headquarters, the Center on Climate Change and National Security. Its charter is not the science of climate change, but the national security impact of phenomena such as desertification, rising sea levels, population shifts, and heightened competition for natural resources, according to the Judicial Watch blog.
"The Center will provide support to American policymakers as they negotiate, implement, and verify international agreements on environmental issues. That is something the CIA has done for years. Decision makers need information and analysis on the effects climate change can have on security. The CIA is well positioned to deliver that intelligence,â€ said then CIA Director Leon Panetta, who is now the Secretary of Defense, where the new climate change center was instituted.
The Center assumed responsibility for coordinating with intelligence community partners on the review and declassification of imagery and other data that could be of use to scientists in their own climate-related research. This effort draws on imagery and other information that is collected in any event, assisting the US scientific community without a large commitment of resources, according to Judicial Watch.
"No one really knows what goes on in the exclusive unit because it operates under a cloak of secrecy that rejects all public-records requests, despite President Obamaâ€™s promise to run a transparent government. What we do know is that the unit is led by senior specialists,â€ the JW blogger noted.
Apparently, the CIA's staff isn't getting the job done because the Defense Science Board (DSB), a decades-old committee appointed to provide the Pentagon with scientific and technical advice, says the U.S. intelligence community needs an organization that can assess the impacts of climate change on national security. And now, President Obama is giving the CIA climate change unit the thumbs down.
According to the JW blogger, in the last few years the Obama Administration has been quite active in its campaign to enlighten Americans about the ills of global warming. A few months ago a group of esteemed scientists from several public universities warned that climate change will make food â€œdangerousâ€ and add to the malnourishment of millions worldwide.