Acadia Senior College


National Security, Climate Change and the Coronavirus Pandemic

May 15, 2020

7:00 p.m.


Learn more about national security and how it has been challenged by both climate change and the coronavirus pandemic with Fred Benson during a virtual talk on Friday, May 15 at 7 p.m. This event is part of the Democracy series and is co-sponsored by the Jesup Memorial Library, Acadia Senior College and the League of Women Voters of Maine, Downeast.

To register for the talk and receive a link to the Zoom meeting, please email Kayla Chagnon at the Jesup:

Assessing the level of national security is a complicated process under any set of circumstances. Attempting to do so with a pandemic wreaking havoc on every sector of American life serves only to magnify the challenge. There are more than 30 factors used by the United States government to determine just how safe we are. However, many Americans believe that the sole determinant of our security is the degree to which American military power dominates any nations or groups of people. This belief completely disregards the insecurity created by many other factors such as global warming, which is not even mentioned in the current security formula.

First, Benson will talk about the process behind determining the level of national security and then he will identify the different component parts, with emphasis on climate change. Second, he will describe the effect the coronavirus may have on the overall national security evaluation.

Benson has been engaged in national and international government affairs activities in the White House, the Pentagon and with Weyerhaeuser Company. During his career in the United States Army his responsibilities included senior positions in the offices of the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of the Army, as well as aviation and ground command assignments in Korea, Vietnam and Alaska. He also served for ten years on the Board of the Center for Naval Analysis, a private corporation supporting the US Navy, Marine Corps, and the departments of Justice, Homeland Security and Education.