Security and Ecology in the Age of Globalization
property ownership arrangements or as direct protestsagainst infrastructure “developments” that dispossessthe poor. Finally, the general reduction in economicactivity caused by the combination of these dynamicscan reduce state revenue and fiscal flexibility, further aggravating difficulties. None of the Toronto researchsuggests that interstate war is likely as a directconsequence of environmental scarcity, although theindirect consequences of social friction caused bylarge-scale migration—in part across nationalboundaries—has in some cases caused internationalelites may aggravate traditional conflicts over land andother resources, especially when these resources arein short supply. Kahl’s reading reinforces the ENCOPpoint that at least a substantial part of rural violencemay have its roots in urban politics. A foreign-aid policyof building state capacity in such circumstances mayonly worsen these situations.In the late 1990s, NATO researchers took on therelationships between environment and security bydrawing on the findings of both the Toronto groupand ENCOP and adding insights from contemporary
From Bougainville to Burma, marginal peoples suffer fromdispossession, violence, and the expropriation of resources to feedinternational markets.
tensions. Frequent alarmist newspaper headlinesnotwithstanding, water wars are also unlikely; thecircumstances that would motivate such wars are rare(Lonergan, 2001).The second approach, embodied in theEnvironment and Conflicts Project (ENCOP) led byGünther Baechler, links environmental concerns moredirectly to development and social change in the South(Baechler, 1998). ENCOP examined many differentcase studies and concluded that, while conflict andenvironmental change are related in many ways,conflict is more likely to be linked directly to thedisruptions of modernity. In summarizing andclarifying the overall ENCOP model, Baechler (1999)stresses that violence was likely to occur in moreremote areas, mountain locations, and grasslands— places where environmental stresses coincide withpolitical tensions and unjust access to resources. For ENCOP, the concept of “environmentaldiscrimination” (which emphasizes situations in whichpolitics creates inequitable access to natural resources)connects directly to what Baechler calls a condition of “maldevelopment.”ENCOP links maldevelopment to a society’stransition from subsistence to market economy. Inmany cases, ENCOP argues, violence occurs as peopleresist expropriation of resources and the environmentaldamage caused by development projects. For example,in Bougainville, Papau New Guinea, a long standingand violent insurgency has been directly linked toopposition to a giant mine (Böge, 1999). Colin Kahl’s(1998) research tackles these matters in a slightlydifferent but loosely parallel way. Drawing on a detailedanalysis of Kenya, Kahl shows how threatened urbanGerman work on climate change and related matters(Carius & Lietzmann, 1999, Lietzmann & Vest, 1999).In this third environmental security approach, theseNATO researchers suggest that environmental matterscan be understood as a complex series of syndromes,some of which might cause conflict. Thecomprehensiveness of these syndromes clearly suggeststhat the notion of environment as a causal factor inconflict is simply too broad to serve as a useful analyticalcategory. But the NATO work also suggests that theenvironment is an important factor in contemporarysocial change. NATO has also sponsored high-profileworkshops to encourage dialogues on these themeswith Eastern Europe and the post-Soviet states; theproceedings suggest numerous possible ways of thinking about these issues (Lonergan, 1999; Petzold-Bradley et al., 2001).A fourth school of thinking, linked to theInternational Peace Research Institute, Oslo (PRIO),has turned the environmental scarcity-conflictargument on its head by suggesting that violence over resources in the South occurs in the struggle to control
resources (de Soysa, 2000). This researchincorporates some economists’ discussions aboutdevelopment difficulties in resource-rich areas; itsuggests that many wars concern control over revenuestreams from resources that have substantial marketvalue. (Examples include timber in Burma, diamondsin Sierra Leone, or oil fields in the Middle East.) ThePRIO research directly links violence in some casesto the core-periphery disruptions of native peoplesnoted by ENCOP. A number of recent studies havereinforced the PRIO argument by tracing the violencesurrounding resources directly to larger patterns of