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Joseph Bryan, Dr. Rod Schoonover Deliver Keynotes During Potomac Officers Club’s Bolstering Climate Resilience for National Security Forum

Potomac Officers Club (POC) hosted its Bolstering Climate Resilience for National Security Forum on Tuesday to bring together the members of the federal sector and government contracting (GovCon) industry to explore the national security implications of climate change and how data analytics can inform agencies’ climate adaptation strategies.

Senior Climate Advisor for the Office of the Secretary of Defense Joseph Bryan and Dr. Rod Schoonover, head of the Ecological Security Program Council on Strategic Risks, acted as the keynote speakers for the virtual event to discuss the challenges in today’s climate landscape.

Following a brief introduction from Pat Tamburrino, Jr., vice president of Logistics with LMI, who acted as the Forum’s moderator, Joseph Bryan took the platform for the opening keynote address to shed some light on the purpose of having a Climate Advisor within the Department of Defense (DOD) and how climate has become a significant issue of national security.

Check out the Potomac Officers Club’s Event Page to rewatch the Bolstering Climate Resilience for National Security Forum on-demand and any other of POC’s forums that you may have missed recently.

Senior Climate Advisor for the Office of the Secretary of Defense Joseph Bryan

To answer the question that Joseph Bryan posed in his opening remarks, he paraphrased Gen. Lloyd Austin, Defense Secretary and 2021 Wash100 Award recipient, who said, “There is little about what DOD does to defend the American people that are not affected by climate change.”

He mentioned that the market for energy technologies has grown considerably since the start of the pandemic and that energy renewables will account for 90 percent of new power capacity additions in the electricity sector across the globe over the next two years.

“We need to compete for energy technologies that will defend our economy and future,” Bryan said. He also mentioned the importance for military capacity and continue on with his keynote address to explain that area further and gave examples of how climate change is impacting our lives today and heavily influencing our future.

Visit the Potomac Officers Club’s Event Page to hear the full keynote address from Senior Climate Advisor for the Office of the Secretary of Defense Joseph Bryan as well as a full panel discussion featuring numerous experts from across the federal government and industry during POC’s most recent virtual event.

Dr. Rod Schoonover, head of the Ecological Security Program Council on Strategic Risks

Following an expert panel moderated by Tamburrino, Jr. and featuring Dr. Erwin Villiger of LMI, Dr. Kathleen White from the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense and Dr. Terence Thompson of the Climate Service, Dr. Rod Schoonover took the stage to deliver the closing keynote address for Potomac Officers Club’s virtual audience.

Dr. Schoonover began his remarks to provide the Forum with a scientific point of view on the matter. He described himself as a “scientist first” and recommended the concept of going back to the first principles surrounding climate change.

He listed a number of stressors impacting our planet, including oceanic oxygen content, heat waves, the consequences of temperature, food security, thermal energy and various other threats to our national security and long term dangers to the Earth.

“I never talk about climate change in the future. I rarely talk about it as a present issue either,” Dr. Schoonover explained. “This is something that we went into a new regime about 15 to 20 years ago. This is something that is happening globally and my argument is that if we don’t address these climate issues, we’re going to be in a doctrine that is dramatically outdated.”

Visit the Potomac Officers Club’s Event Page to hear the full keynote address from Dr. Rod Schoonover, head of the Ecological Security Program Council on Strategic Risks as well as the rest of the Bolstering Climate Resilience for National Security Forum.

On Tuesday, Sept. 22nd, Potomac Officers Club will host its Meeting the Challenge of Climate Change in Industry, Government and Society Virtual Forum to define a clear picture of the challenges that the U.S. and the rest of the world are facing as well as some of the most significant questions surrounding climate change.

Dr. Renee McPherson, university director for the University of Oklahoma’s South Central Climate Adaptation Science Center, will serve as the keynote speaker for the Forum to discuss the societal and ecological impacts of climate variability and change as well as its long-term impact on the health of the Earth, our national security and way of life.

Visit PotomacOfficersClub.com to register for the platform’s Meeting the Challenge of Climate Change in Industry, Government and Society on Sept. 22nd.

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