The United States’ war on terror and climate change

The United States’ war on terror and climate change


Since dawn the United States has thwarted a binding global climate agreement – if necessary by the use of illegal spying on countries with opposing plans. The U.S. negotiating line is now the main track at the COP Summits and the rest is sadness. Now, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says that climate change ranks among the world’s most serious problems, such as disease outbreaks, poverty, terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (more about his speech ‘here’). But how much money has the United States spent on the so called “war on terror”? … And how much addressing the climate change disaster?

According to a detailed inventory (see ‘here‘), the United States spent $ 1.5 trillion in the period 2001-2014 on the war on terror. By comparison, the United States addressed the climate change challenge with $ 1.2 billion in the period 2003-2014 (accumulated funding deposited). If terror spendings and climate change funding combined are 100% the terror has attracted 99.92% and climate change only 0.08% of the spendings (subject to incomparable estimation methods).

The United States’ has decided that the climate change problem must be addressed by voluntary national CO2 Emission targets, complemented with a global profit-based market (read more ‘here’). The recent John Kerry speech looks like a sympathetic separation from his imprudent nation which has led the global war on “climate-care” for decades and still rejects a global binding climate agreement.

In ClimatePositions the United States’ updated Climate Contribution (climate debt) accumulated since 2000, add up to $1.6 trillion (deposited funding are deducted). See the global rankings in the menu “Calculations”. The diagram below shows the CO2 Emissions in decades of the United States in comparison with the world average. The delayed U.S. reductions in CO2 Emissions started along with the financial crises in 2008 – 16 years after the first United Nations Convention on Climate Change in 1992 (with the objective “to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system”.).

United States, CO2 in decades

Source on CO2 Emissions: EIA, U.S. Energy Information Administration (links in the menu “Calculations”).
Source on climate change funding is from Climate Funds Update (links in the menu “Calculations”).
Drawing by Claus Andersen, 2014.


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