“As the Secretary of the Navy, I can tell you that I have made climate one of my top priorities since the first day I came into office,” Del Toro said March 1 in remarks at the University of the Bahamas.
Del Toro said he met with Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Davis during his visit and spoke “at length” with him about the climate crisis and focused the bulk of his remarks on climate.
“The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps team has been working on climate and energy security for a long time,” he said. “And we are accelerating and broadening those efforts.”
“We view the climate crisis much the same way as damage control efforts on a stricken ship. This is an all-hands-on-deck moment,” he added.
Del Toro spoke just days before the Biden administration released its proposed budget for 2024, which calls for shrinking the Navy fleet even though most military experts and senior Navy officers have called for more ships to deter China’s larger fleet.
For several years now, the Navy has set a goal of having 355 manned ships. But, for the last three years, the Biden administration has proposed shrinking the fleet below the roughly 298 ships it has available now, instead of increasing it toward a 355-ship goal.
The Navy next week will host an open-source table-top wargame to experiment with how climate change could affect a future conflict, a service official said today. … Each military service now has a chief sustainability officer in an effort to follow President Joe Biden’s executive order on sustainability.
The purpose of the June 29 exercise is “to come together and really think about and experience what it means to operate in a climate-impacted environment,” Navy assistant secretary for energy, installations and environment Meredith Berger said.
Full pdf 32-page report here.
Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro just released “Climate Action 2030,” a 32-page report which identifies climate change as an “existential threat” to the U.S. Navy and the nation. In the report’s Foreword, Del Toro writes that climate is “the focal point” for his tenure as Navy Secretary, and notes that both President Biden and Defense Secretary Austin share that view. The Navy Department, Del Toro writes, will be an “environmental leader” that takes “bold climate action.” …
The Navy Department report is filled with color photographs of hurricanes, floods, electric vehicles, military families participating in an “oyster castle installation,” naval installations with solar panels, naval officers helping with disaster relief efforts, employees at a naval base planting salt marsh plants, electric-powered amphibious assault ships, and naval officers helping to install “mosquito surveillance and control equipment.” There are no photos of naval warfare, no references to Mahan, no discussion of the challenge posed by the PLA Navy. …
Topics of the report include: “Climate-informed decision-making,” “Integrating Climate considerations into the Budget Process,” “Electrification of Tactical Ground Vehicles,” hybrid propulsion for navy ships, and “Worldwide Climate Health Partnerships.” Del Toro’s express goal is “integrating climate action into every aspect of the Department of Navy mission.”
Flashback: ‘A total takedown’ of myth by the Center for Strategic and International Studies — ‘Since the dawn of civilization, warmer eras have meant fewer wars’