CIA Shuts Down Climate Research ProgramAmid spotlight on security threat from climate change, intelligence community ends scientific collaboration.
BY JASON PLAUTZ
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May 21, 2015 The Central Intelligence Agency is shutting down a research program that offered classified data to scientists to examine the link between climate change and global security threats.
A CIA spokesman confirmed that the agency had ended its MEDEA program, a 1990s-era intelligence program restarted in 2010 under President Obama. The collaboration gave scientists access to intelligence assets like satellite data to study climate change and inform on how its impacts could inflame conflicts.
CIA spokesman Ryan Whaylen said “these projects have been completed and CIA will employ these research results and engage external experts as it continues to evaluate the national security implications of climate change.”
The news was first reported by Mother Jones.
The announcement comes just days after President Obama said climate change was a “serious threat to global security” in a commencement address to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. Climate change, Obama said, “will impact how our military defends our country. So we need to act, and we need to act now.”