Mar 22, 2019

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Situational awareness: President Trump plans to nominate conservative economist and 2016 campaign adviser Stephen Moore to the Federal Reserve board.

  • Moore previously called Fed Chairman Jerome Powell incompetent.
1 big thing: Flooding's national security risk

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

In just the past 12 months, Nebraska floods, Carolina and Florida hurricanes and California wildfires have put military installations in peril, ravaging buildings and doing billions in damage.

The big picture: The national security consequences of climate change, mainly through extreme weather events, are here and now, Axios Science editor Andrew Freedman emails.

Why it matters: This is not a far off threat for the Pentagon to consider, and it's certain to get more challenging as the climate continues to warm, seas rise, and stronger and wetter storms strike. 

The AP described the efforts to halt the floodwaters at Offutt Air Force Base, which hosts the Strategic Command headquarters just outside Omaha, Nebraska:

  • "Earlier heavy flooding at Offutt has prompted the base to start raising its levee by 2 feet this year, said Maj. Meghan M. Liemburg-Archer, spokeswoman for Strategic Command."
  • "More than 30 aircraft were towed to higher ground or flown to other locations. Crews hauled out loads of equipment, engines and tools."
  • "By Saturday, the flood had rolled over a third of the base, swamping more than 1.2 million square feet of buildings."
  • "Though Strategic Command headquarters escaped flooding, it had to cut staff to a minimum as high water blocked roads. The command holds down a range of responsibilities, including global strike capacity, missile defense, nuclear operations and strategic deterrence."
GIF of Offutt flooding. Credit: DigitalGlobe

The bottom line: Retired Rear Adm. David W. Titley told the AP that Defense Department officials “by and large know what they need to do, but it’s very hard for them to do. White House dynamics are the White House does not want to hear about it."

  • “We probably do need some walls — but they’re probably levees," Titley said.
Bonus: Pic du jour
Photo: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

KJ Buffen of Mississippi falls to the court after a play against Oklahoma today.

  • Oklahoma prevailed, 95-72.
  • And #3 seed Kansas State was upset by #14 seed UC-Irvine, 70-64.
2. What you missed
  1. Trump raised eyebrows today with a tweet declaring he would be withdrawing "additional large scale Sanctions" on North Korea, which he said had been announced earlier in the day by the Treasury Department. 
  2. Indonesian airline Garuda is seeking to cancel the remainder of its $4.9 billion order for 48 more Boeing 737 MAX 8 jets, the New York Times reports.
  3. Public schools in Charlottesville closed the last two days after reports of racially based online threats, per ABC News.
  4. Mere days after Trump's biting tweets about the closure of an Ohio GM factory, the auto company announced $300 million plans to add 400 jobs and manufacture a new electric vehicle at its Detroit-area plant, AP reports.
  5. Two ferocious cyclones are taking aim at Australia this weekend, with the possibility that both could make landfall as Category 4 or greater storms within 24 hours of each other. Details.
  6. A 19-year-old survivor of the Parkland shooting took her own life last weekend after living with post-traumatic stress disorder, per CBS News.
3. 1 🍕 thing

Shaquille O'Neal is joining Papa John's board of directors as part of an $8.25 million endorsement deal that also has him investing in company stores in Atlanta, CNN reports.

  • "O'Neal has experience in the food business. He owns a Krispy Kreme Doughnuts franchise in Atlanta, a Big Chicken fast casual fried chicken joint in Las Vegas, and Shaquille's restaurant in Los Angeles."

Grab a slice.

Mike Allen