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Research Report

A US Strategy for Sustainable Energy Security

David Koranyi
Foreword by Chuck Hagel
Copyright Date: Mar. 1, 2016
Published by: Atlantic Council
Pages: 52
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. i-i)
    Chuck Hagel

    Energy and the environment are not mutually exclusive. They are interconnected. They both are critical for economic development, productivity and higher standards of living for all people. A changing climate results in more extreme weather events causing damage at home, while intensifying global instability, hunger, poverty, and conflict across the globe. I announced the Pentagon’s Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap in 2013. It noted that climate change represents a threat to the national security of the United States, and acts as a threat multiplier for our nation because it has the potential to exacerbate many of the challenges we are dealing...

  2. (pp. 1-16)

    Access to energy and its efficient and sustainable use continue to underpin any state’s ability to provide for its citizens’ security and economic wellbeing.¹ Energy is a defining element of national sovereignty and national power. Since the dawn of humanity, ways to multiply human strength to grow food, build shelter against harsh weather, and produce weapons to defend themselves have been a defining element of the human endeavor.

    Revolutions in energy generation have driven transformational shifts in human history: the prehistoric use of thermal energy in the form of fire; the domestication of animals to leverage their muscle power in...

  3. (pp. 17-33)

    What are the prerequisites for the United States to prevail in this new world of climate and energy trends and threats? How can US energy policy contribute to a sustainable global climate? How should the United States navigate the pitfalls of a rapidly changing global energy scene that not only poses great danger to US interests but also represents opportunities to cement and project American values and power? What are the main components of a US energy strategy that maximizes the geopolitical, economic, and social benefits for the nation?

    For historical reasons, US energy policy consists of a plethora of...

  4. (pp. 35-36)

    The first of the Atlantic Council Strategy Paper Series, Dynamic Stability: US Strategy for a World in Transition, identified the protection of global commons by the United States as critically important for both material and moral reasons. It rightly argued that “it is important to include climate in the definition of global commons.”59 That paper defined ‘dynamic stability’ as the key conceptual framework to deal with a fast-changing ‘Westphalian-Plus’ world and argued for “harnessing change to preserve the liberal international order.”60

    Harnessing change in the energy sector expeditiously is an existential issue for all humanity. Dynamic stability in the US...