Peacemaking & the Environment
“Environment” and “Peace” are not separate issues: sustainable development is critical to achieving security, and peace is required for effective development. However, we have often failed to leverage opportunities to manage environmental problems in ways that build trust and peace between parties in conflict. Environmental management can help overcome political tensions by promoting interaction, confidence building, and technical cooperation. Environmental peacemaking is an off-shoot of environmental security, a diverse set of arguments about connections among the environment, conflict, and state and human security. This course will focus on environmental peacemaking opportunities to build confidence between and within nations by capitalizing on the dynamics of environmental interdependence. We will discuss environmental pathways to peace at different stages of conflict: 1) environmental peacemaking as conflict prevention; 2) environmental peacemaking as lifeline during conflict; 3) environmental peacemaking as helping end conflict; and 4) environmental peacemaking as making peace sustainable. With a special emphasis on cases drawn from a variety of geographic settings, we will analyze the strengths and weaknesses of these approaches all along the conflict continuum and among different types of environmental issues.