Defense Contractors View Climate Change as “Business Opportunities”

Saturday, August 17, 2013
Raytheon drone cockpit (photo: Raytheon)

A changing climate can mean a changing political world—and that can mean new ways for companies, particularly defense contractors, to make money.


Take Raytheon for example. The Massachusetts-based corporation takes climate change seriously, and is doing its part to help reduce its own carbon footprint. It even won an award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for “climate leadership.”


But Raytheon officials also are realists, and they see how their products could become even more profitable as the planet warms up.


In addition to making missiles and other weaponry, Raytheon turns out renewable energy technologies, weather-prediction products, and emergency response equipment for natural disasters—all of which could be in more demand in the coming years, Jeremy Schulman wrote for Mother Jones.


Furthermore, Schulman found a company document that said extreme weather conditions could have “destabilizing effects” on societies and their governments, leading to internal strife and political leaders in need of more firepower.


When asked by Schulman about Raytheon’s new opportunities, spokesman Jon Kasle refused to get into specifics, although he did mention its work on non-military systems like the Joint Polar Satellite System run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to monitor environmental and weather conditions.


But it’s not hard to imagine how Raytheon could market its more lethal products to countries struggling to deal with instabilities exacerbated or brought on by global warming. Pretty much any government with an army, navy or air force could become a customer for the arms manufacturer’s large and varied missile inventory that includes the Maverick, the Advanced Cruise Missile, the Sparrow, the Sidewinder, the AMRAAM, the TOW, the Tomahawk, the Javelin, the Stinger, and others.

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Defense Contractor: Climate Change Could Create "Business Opportunities" (by Jeremy Schulman, Mother Jones)


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