A retired four-star Air Force general is paying a visit to Iowa to talk about national security threats posed by climate change. General Ronald Keys serves on the government-funded Military Advisory Board, which released a report earlier this year that warned climate change serves as a “catalyst for conflict.”
Keys says changing weather patterns are impacting several U.S. military bases, especially on the coasts. “The second thing is our training ranges…there are areas where can’t train like we used to train because we can’t use certain types of weapons because of fire danger,” Keys says.
In addition, Keys says extreme weather events brought by climate change are threatening crop production. “That’s what we mean when we talk about a catalyst for conflict,” Keys says. “When people don’t have enough to eat, when people don’t have enough water, when people don’t have a way to make a living, then they start to move or the start to be activists…or the government can’t support them any longer and so you have, perhaps, radicals taking over certain areas of the world.”
Keys spent much of Wednesday in Des Moines meeting with Iowa policymakers and agriculture leaders. Today he’ll be the featured speaker at the grand opening of a rural electric cooperative’s massive solar farm near Kalona.