More from YES! Magazine’s Summer 2012 issue: Can the US Military Save Us From Climate Disaster?
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  Powerful Ideas, Practical Actions         June 2012 

  The Real Reason the Military is Going Green

Army Fuel photo courtesy of U.S. Army Big Oil is a big risk for national security. Can our military—the world’s No. 1 oil guzzler—change the politics of climate change?


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Imagine an organization with a fleet of 4,000 electric vehicles, a “Net Zero” initiative requiring use of locally produced energy and water, a growing inventory of solar powered equipment, and plans to install 3 gigawatts of renewable power.

Sounds like an environmentalist’s futuristic fantasy.

It’s actually the U.S. Military, right now. For the Department of Defense, there’s no debate about climate change: It’s real, and it’s a threat to national security. All branches of the armed forces have major programs—worth billions of dollars—designed to reduce the military’s dependence on oil and lower its enormous carbon footprint.

It’s a practical matter for the generals. Climate instability will lead to political strife and military intervention. Depending on oil in war zones puts at risk the troops and contractors who run endless fuel convoys.

But those practical considerations may lead to changes in politicians’ attitudes and to acceleration of a national shift to renewable energy.


Homes, the Summer 2012 issue of YES! Magazine
This article comes from the Summer Issue of YES! Magazine.



  More from the Summer 2012 Issue of YES!      

People Need Homes photo by Jeff Dunnicliff

Dear Bank of America, We're Not Leaving

The fight against unjust evictions just got fiercer as the national Occupy movement joins forces with community anti-foreclosure groups.

Occupy didn’t go away when its encampments were shut down last fall. It’s using its nationwide reach and visibility to link long-time housing activists fighting the wave of foreclosures across the country. From declaring Foreclosure Prevention Zones to occupying vacant houses, these new alliances are taking on the financial behemoths and putting pressure on politicians to protect distressed homeowners—not greedy banks.

Photo Essay
Mortgaging the Future: Portraits of Underwater America
Eleven million homes underwater is more than we can afford.
America Underwater Family, photo courtesy of The New Bottom Line


SEE ALSO: Street Credibility—Homeless Protesters Fight For Recognition
  What’s New Online  

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Treaty Like It’s 1999: Connecting the Dots on Trade
by Raj Patel

From Japan, Raj Patel on the expansion of the Trans-Pacific trade agreement and the homegrown battle to stop it.
Quebec's Student Revolt Goes Viral
by Mark Engler

Inside the biggest demonstration of civil disobedience in Canadian history.
The Rise of the New Economy Movement
by Gar Alperovitz

There’s economic reform, and then there’s economic transformation. How entrepreneurs, activists, and theorists are laying the groundwork for a very different economy.
From Gangs to Gardens: How Community Agriculture Transformed Quesada Avenue
by Katherine Gustafson

Ten years ago, the residents of this crime-ridden neighborhood started planting gardens—and everything changed.
  Did you miss…  

YES! Email Newsletter archive Highlights from the last newsletter:

:: Real Homes: Small, Frugal, and Green
With 5 million houses in foreclosure, we are rediscovering that living sustainably includes living affordably.

:: How to Build Green on a Budget
The challenge: build the greenest houses on earth—and make them affordable.

:: We’ve Got Some Big Houses—That We Could Share
Just 60 years ago, the average American had 291 square feet of living space. Now it’s close to 1,000 square feet. Have we changed our needs that much? Or just our wants?

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  From the Publisher 

Citizens United Protest photo courtesy of Public Citizen
Use the People’s Veto to End Citizens United
by Fran Korten

Widespread, multi-sector activism is exactly what is needed to amend the Constitution.

  Signs of Life 

Plutonium photo courtesy of National Nuclear Security Administration How a Tiny Group of Activists Blocked a Giant New Plutonium Facility
by Stuart Glascock

From New Mexico, a victory in the fight against nuclear power plants.  

Nuclear Power Plant photo by the Bellona Foundation Germany Swaps Nuclear for Solar and Wind Power
by Oliver Lazenby

In the wake of the Fukushima meltdown, Germany aims to close all its reactors by 2022.  

Melting Arctic photo courtesy of NASA Feedback from the Melting Arctic
by Valerie Schloredt

NASA completed a cross-institutional study on rising methane levels in the Arctic. The results, we’re afraid, do not look good.  

:: MORE From Our Current Issue

YES! Magazine's 2nd Annual Celebration of People Power. June 6, 2012, Town Hall, Seattle. With Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker, bestselling author Frances Moore Lappé, and Hawaiian slack-key guitar player Makana. Tickets on sale now.
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