Nautilus Peace and Security Weekly – 30 January 2014

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"Nautilus Peace and Security Weekly – 30 January 2014", NAPSNet Weekly Report, January 30, 2014,

Deterrence imageDETERRENCE: Assessment of nuclear monitoring and verification technologies, Defense Science Board (January 2014) [PDF, 3.5 MB]

New actors and new types of proliferation exceed the capacity of multilateral and national monitoring regimes. Convergent intelligence and monitoring architectures create “corridors of observation” in multiple domains, establish suspicious “patterns of life” therein, and focus persistent monitoring assets on individuals and activities of concern.

DPRK IMAGEDPRK: Korean crisis prompts confrontation with China, Jonathan D. Pollack and Richard C. Bush III, The Brookings Institute (23 January 2014)

The overall U.S.-China strategic relationship can be negatively – or positively – influenced by bi-lateral confrontation or peace on the Korean peninsula. Both Koreas proposed and counter-proposed to reunite some families separated by the Korean War, but only side made clearly unacceptable requests to cancel military exercises.  Low levels of trust on all sides, increase the likelihood even bi-lateral humanitarian gestures will be cancelled again.

ENERGY IMAGEENERGY SECURITY: Environmental groups say Obama needs to address climate change more aggressively, Juliet Eilperin and Lenny Bernstein, Washington Post (16 January 2014)

Tonight (28th January), Obama did pay lip service to carbon pollution in his lecture to the Congress, but did not mention Keystone pipeline, leaving Canada still in the limbo. In the meantime, train transport of oil has led to another fire, in North Dakota, after one in Quebec last July.  James Hansen, now a major leader of the opposition to the pipeline, favors nuclear. He claims to know how many lives nuclear has saved and will save compared to coal power, but not how many lives a pipeline may save compared to train transport of crude oil.

Gov imageGOVERNANCE AND CIVIL SOCIETY: Insight: Abe’s shrine visit blew Japan-S. Korea efforts for summit sky-high, Yoshihiro Makino, Asahi Shimbun (28 January 2014)

Japan PM Abe’s visit to Yasukuni Shrine in December has thwarted diplomatic efforts between Japan and the ROK to arrange a high level meeting between the leaders of the two countries, according to sources on both sides. The U.S. wants assurances that Abe won’t make another visit to the site, and a poll shows Japanese voters split in their support for Abe’s visit. Regional tensions had some investors worried at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Climateadapt imageCLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION: Policy and institutions in adaptation to climate change: case study on flood mitigation infrastructure in India and Nepal, Partha J Das and Himadri K Bhuyan, International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (2013) [PDF, 555 KB]

Floods are the most frequent water-induced hazard in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. The Brahmaputra River Valley in Assam, India, and the Koshi River basin including regions of Nepal and India are two of the most severely flood-affected parts in this region. “Riverbank erosion and land degradation from the deposition of sand on a large scale are other water-induced hazards associated with flooding. These three hazards together have seriously affected people’s lives and livelihoods in many areas of these basins”.

Climatesec imageCLIMATE CHANGE AND SECURITY: Global Risks 2014, Ninth Edition, World Economic Forum (2014)

Something does not fit. Global economic and political elites see climate change as one of the highest global risks – both in terms of likelihood and impact. Stressing systemic risk interconnections, they see climate change as having pivotal importance and the strongest linkages, closely connected to global governance risks. Meanwhile, a statistical analysis of civil conflict in Asia maintains “climatic events appear to play a trivial role”.

The Nautilus Peace and Security Weekly Report presents articles and full length reports each week in six categories: Austral security, nuclear deterrence, energy security, climate change and security, the DPRK, climate change adaptation and governance and civil society. Our team of contributors carefully select items that highlight the links between these themes and the three regions in which our offices are found—North America, Northeast Asia, and the Austral-Asia region.

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