Perspectives on COP21 | Paris, France en Paris Agreement, Triumph or Fraud? <span>Paris Agreement, Triumph or Fraud?</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>“<a href="">The Paris Agreement</a> is a monumental triumph for people and our planet,” tweeted UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at the close of COP21.  “It sets the stage for progress in ending poverty, strengthening peace and ensuring a life of dignity and opportunity for all.” Taking a different view, <a href="" target="_blank">James Hansen</a>, climate scientist and former director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, says the agreement is "just worthless words" and a "fraud." </p> <p><img alt="paris agreement" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="54e86724-a224-4a67-bc69-521b313f049f" height="502" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/cop21-unfccc-paris-agreement-1550x804.jpg" width="968" loading="lazy" /></p> <p>Whether the <a href="" target="_blank">Paris agreement</a> is viewed as a success or failure hinges in large part, at least for those who acknowledge the scientific evidence for human caused climate change, on one’s assessment of what can be achieved by an international climate agreement. Critics of the agreement decry its lack of binding commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that can be enforced through international law. They also criticize the voluntary national commitments that are at the core of the Paris agreement as inadequate. Without legally binding commitments that, when aggregated, would limit warming to less than 2 degrees above the preindustrial average, or 1.5 degrees according to some, the Paris agreement is asserted to condemn the future to dangerous, even catastrophic, climate change.</p> <p> </p> <p>Implicit in these criticisms is a belief that sovereign nations should, and could, subject themselves to international law on domestic decisions that are fundamental for their economic development and wellbeing.  Also that voluntary cooperation by nation states, buttressed by a transparent reporting system and peer-pressure, cannot yield action that is sufficiently transformative and swift.</p> <p> </p> <p>What these critics want is an agreement architecture similar to that of the Kyoto Protocol, with its legally binding emission reductions. But when Canada and Australia failed to meet their legal commitments, the world saw how difficult it is to enforce emission limits on sovereign nations, particularly when other parties desperately want the out-of-compliance parties to sign on to new commitments. The world also saw how difficult it is to persuade the United States and emerging economies such as China, India, Brazil, Indonesia and South Africa, which are not parties to the Kyoto Protocol, to join the protocol or join a new agreement with similar legal obligations.</p> <p> </p> <p>These challenges led parties to try a different approach that began to take shape at COP15 in Copenhagen in 2009. While the Copenhagen Accord was described by many as a disaster, its “pledge and review” approach offered a new architecture that has been adopted as the foundation of the Paris Agreement – an architecture that combines both “bottom-up” and “top-down” elements.  The bottom-up elements include “nationally determined contributions,” the individual pledges made by 180+ national governments to reduce or constrain GHG emissions according to self-assessments of their capabilities and circumstances. The top-down elements include rules for periodic reporting, review and revision of national plans that are applicable to all parties.</p> <p> </p> <p>Triumph or fraud? The Paris Agreement is neither. It is true that the submitted nationally determined contributions fall far short of the emission reductions that are needed if warming is to be limited to less than 2 or 1.5 degrees C. And it is also true that nations will be tempted to deliver less than promised. But the agreement puts nearly all nations on record as committed to taking clearly stated actions on climate change that represent a substantial change from the current path. It requires them to report on their actions and progress in ways that are transparent and that can be used to hold them accountable. It provides for financial and other support to be given by developed countries to developing countries. And the agreement calls on nations to take more aggressive action in future rounds. The agreement is not a triumphal solution. But it provides a serviceable architecture for facilitating the substantial work that needs to be done to avert climate catastrophe, much of it at national and sub-national levels of large economies and rapidly growing economies. In the US, the first order of business is working to assure that the Clean Power Plan is implemented in all 50 states.</p> <p> </p> <p>A collection of commentary on the Paris Agreement can be found <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> </div> <span><span>learyn</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-23T11:24:44-05:00" title="Wednesday, December 23, 2015 - 11:24">Wed, 12/23/2015 - 11:24</time> </span> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Wed, 23 Dec 2015 16:24:44 +0000 learyn 38 at Black Lives Matter, Stop Climate Change <span>Black Lives Matter, Stop Climate Change</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p> </p> <p>While walking through the Climate Generations Area at Le Bourget, I heard a surprising chorus of “Black Lives Matter.” Curious, I followed the sound and found the COP21 delegation of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities Consortium.  The delegation, 50 members strong from 15 schools, was holding a rally to voice concerns of African Americans in this international forum, connecting global climate change to issues of importance to black communities in the United States. Through chants and signs, the HBCU delegation delivered the messages “Dirty air = silent killer of the black community”; “Black lives matter! We matter”; “Environmental racism kills”; and “Don’t frack up my neighborhood.”</p> <p> </p> <p>Among the delegation was Dr. Robert Bullard of Texas Southern University, regarded as the father of the environmental justice movement in the US. Bullard and others from HBCU institutions have attended past COPs. But the delegation that attended COP21 is the largest group that the consortium has ever sent to the annual UN climate conference.</p> <p><img alt="black students" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="566524fa-40b6-4b23-b9dd-81dab0a9aff2" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/2015-01-01%2000.00.00-5.jpg" /></p> <p>Quoted in an article written by <a href="" target="_blank">Cassie Owens</a>, Bullard wrote in an email “Too often at the previous COPs, African-American voices have been muted or absent altogether. As soon as we stepped off the bus and proceeded to the security at the Paris Le Bourget, the first words uttered by a guard was ‘wow.’”</p> <p> </p> <p>I had a similar reaction when I heard and saw the HBCU delegation. When Black Lives Matter and other social and political movements connect climate change to their core concerns, the political changes necessary to transform to a zero-carbon economy begin to seem possible.</p> <p> </p> <p>I spoke with Bullard briefly after the rally and asked him why HBCU sent their largest delegation ever to COP21. His response was that several things came together to make this happen. First is the Black Lives Matter movement itself, which is energizing black activism on many fronts. Also contributing is that this year is the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, which demonstrated the risks posed by extreme weather and climate change to black communities. Another factor is the importance of this particular COP for creating a stronger basis for international collaboration on climate change. As Bullard wrote in the email quoted by Owens, “It is important that our students witness firsthand how global treaties are negotiated. What is decided in Paris is their climate future.”</p> </div> <span><span>learyn</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-21T12:15:23-05:00" title="Monday, December 21, 2015 - 12:15">Mon, 12/21/2015 - 12:15</time> </span> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Mon, 21 Dec 2015 17:15:23 +0000 learyn 37 at One Week Later: From PA to Paris <span>One Week Later: From PA to Paris </span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>The world is listening. We've rallied, we've marched, we've kicked, we've screamed - Yesterday, 195 nations made a step in the right direction in the Paris Agreement at <a data-ft="{&quot;tn&quot;:&quot;*N&quot;,&quot;type&quot;:104}" href=";story_id=10207299312314438">‪</a>COP21, but what does that mean? I've scrolled through countless articles sharing the hallmark of this moment, but, again, what does it really mean? It means that nations have agreed that it's time to do something. GREAT - to what extent? Investments towards a low carbon, resilient, and sustainable future are monumental, but how about the people who are already suffering in a warming world? We can't bargain with the environment. It can't be sold! I am privileged because I was there. Last week, I listened to negotiators draft the text of this agreement. Last week, I rallied for divestment with youth from all around the world. Last week, I felt like a big voice in a little world. This is the biggest, most interdisciplinary issue of our generation. What else do we all have in common? WE LIVE HERE.</p> <p> </p> <p>So, where are we now? What can you do? If you are interested in reading the text of the agreement, please take a read <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>. The UN Climate Change <a href="" target="_blank">Newsroom</a> is also a great place to get the latest information about the negotiations. As a first semester senior who just turned in her thesis, I hope to rest and reflect over the holiday season on this wild semester and experience in Paris. I feel as if I have a duty to inform others, and I start this by sharing my experiences with my family when I arrive back in Los Angeles. Thankfully Paris was one of the most well covered COP's in history, people are really listening, but will it be enough? I encourage everyone to reach out this holiday season - have a drink with your family and make a toast to the world you want to live in. Open up the conversation to the kids, tell them about how fun it is to ride a bike to school and have your Aunt Sally join in. It won't just be healthy for the family, but healthy for the earth. Spending lots of free time at home? Start a composting bin in your house! Here is a great <a href="" target="_blank">article</a> as a foundation for your new sustainable project!</p> <p> </p> <p>Every little bit counts, Paris was just the beginning. A step in the right direction. I found this quote by Rose-Walters Prize winner and a personal hero of mine the most compelling: "This agreement won't save the planet, not even close," Bill McKibben, co-founder of <a data-beacon="{&quot;p&quot;:{&quot;mnid&quot;:&quot;entry_text&quot;,&quot;lnid&quot;:&quot;citation&quot;,&quot;mpid&quot;:4}}" href=""></a>, a climate advocacy group, told The Huffington Post in an email. "But it's possible that it saves the chance of saving the planet -- if movements push even harder from here on out." Read this article <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>. </p> <p> </p> <p>As for me? Yes, I will be catching up on all of the sleep that I missed out on this semester, but you will probably find me joining <a href="" target="_blank">these</a> protestors in Porter Ranch, CA. I live a short 5 minutes from this neighborhood and it's the site of a leak that is spewing <a href="" target="_blank">100,000 pounds of methane every hour</a>, according to estimates. Environmental costs and <a href="" target="_blank">health costs</a> are unimaginable. But, yet another step in the right direction will be to raise our voice to shut down this well. </p> <p> </p> <p>Lastly, I am so thankful to everyone of my supporters for helping me fund the opportunity to travel from <a href="" target="_blank">PA to Paris</a>. It could not have been done without the love, support, and encouragement of you all. Happy Holidays and be well. XO.</p> <p><img alt="pa to paris" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="023da5dd-8bfa-42b4-a9af-b9dcdf620051" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_1854.jpeg" /></p> </div> <span><span>eplascencia02</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-13T12:23:29-05:00" title="Sunday, December 13, 2015 - 12:23">Sun, 12/13/2015 - 12:23</time> </span> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above field--tags"> <h3 class="field__label field--tags__label">Tags</h3> <ul class="links field__items field--tags__items"> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/cop21" hreflang="en">COP21</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/paris" hreflang="en">Paris</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/reflection" hreflang="en">Reflection</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/porter-ranch" hreflang="en">Porter Ranch</a></li> </ul> </div> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Sun, 13 Dec 2015 17:23:29 +0000 eplascencia02 36 at Reflecting on COP21 <span>Reflecting on COP21</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>Some reflections on my time at COP21:</p> <p><img alt="cop 21 sign" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="528107f7-9fc0-49d9-b0de-37c43ae716d6" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_7106.jpg" /></p> <p><img alt="animals" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="671fd27a-6c43-48c5-b08c-b1bcfe70e92f" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_5450.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>Context of the COP:</strong> The first notable difference from my previous experience at COP17 in Durban is that Paris’s wildlife (recycled plastic animals in the COP Conference Center) does not quite compare to that of South Africa. This is to say that the culture and context of this COP felt quite different this time around. Durban was informally called, “Africa’s COP,” and the conference was infused with exposes of African culture including dancing and dining. Additionally, I recall delegates expressing that there was an exciting and unusually high representation of African delegates at the COP. Experiencing COP17, safaris, and the children’s villages in the Valley of 1000 Hills provided our group an incredible experience where we were able to connect the dots between the negotiations and life of the animals and people being severely impacted by climate change.</p> <p><img alt="paris" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="30dcfb62-9d6c-44c5-b310-9e6084789ae1" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_6887.jpg" /></p> <p>During the Paris experience, when we traveled around the city, it evoked another aspect of the climate change challenge: greening and decarbonizing urban setting. As I looked out over Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower it struck me that I could only see a handful of green spaces. At the ground level, it is clear that actions are being taking to decrease the emissions of the city. For example, all the city buses are hybrids and the overall public transit system in the city is comprehensive. But, these actions are far eliminating GHG emissions in Paris, and there is still a lot of work to be done. Walking around Paris was also a lesson in the most effective (and least effective) ways to communicate climate change. As discussed in my previous post, artists and activists from around the world came to Paris to express their message for climate action. Each took a different tone- some confrontational, some emotional, and some scientific. The twelve chunks of ice from Greenland stand out as the most impactful public art piece for me because the contrasting beauty and disaster inherent in the display.</p> <p><img alt="ice on street" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="caffe39a-3f23-435d-a424-b9f4b11c832b" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_6625.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>Perceptions inside COP21:</strong> Moving inside the conference center, at COP21, it felt like the world was watching. New outlets from around the world ran around the halls chasing after key decision makers and prominent icons. Whether or not people not predisposed to pay attention to events such as this were actually watching, it helped set a tone at the conference that what is happening here is not happening in a bubble. Bill McKibben of shared that COP21 is very different from COP15 in Copenhagen because citizens from around the world are now mobilized to respond to what world leaders bring home from this conference. In 2009, this was not the case because there was not a movement of people calling for climate action like there is now.</p> <p><img alt="nations united" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="3e62e03b-11e1-4e54-9012-73f172f29bf3" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_7094.jpg" /></p> <p>As I interviewed delegates for my research project, I ask if this COP felt different to them than previous COPs. Most reported, yes. Saleemul Huq, a prominent adaptation expert from Bangladesh, said that there is certainly heightened ambition at this COP like we have never seen before. The ambition gap still exists, and action most likely will not happen at the rate demanded by negotiating blocks such as the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), but it does seem that tone has shifted. It was exciting to be in the same space with these negotiators as they (or most of them) work to craft a deal that should change the trajectory of world development.</p> <p><strong>Day-to-Day Activity:</strong> During each day, I divided my time between attending press conference, side events, and going around to country and organization booths to speak with delegates one on one. A conversation that stands out among this 80 plus hours of conference events was my discussion with an Iraqi delegate. He started our conversation by saying that he wanted to have a conversation brain to brain meaning that we were not going to talk as a person from Iraq to a person from the US with all the baggage that carries, but rather as two people who have a shared mission to deal with the climate crisis. From there, we talked for a long time about his goals for the country to sustainably develop the regions of the country crush by war focusing on renewable energy. We also discussed the challenges that the Iraqi delegates face because their only join the UNFCCC in 2010, so they are still working to figure out the system. At the end of the conversation, I met five or so other delegates from Iraq who gifted me a shirt, a date (the fruit), a button, and their literature on climate change in Iraq. For the remainder of the conference, every time I saw them, we waved and chatted. This experience represents the unique opportunity presented by the COP to network and build bridges with people from around the world to learn more about the nuances of climate change at one time than one would every dream to be possible. At COP17, the knowledge sharing and capacity building that took place outside the negotiations between civil society astounded me, and I experience this in Paris to an even higher degree.</p> <p><img alt="bags" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="f315b9c6-9f03-47a4-80b5-924e5e9b3db1" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_5440.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>To wrap up: </strong>Despite the long hours and sometime (ok, very frequent) depressing information, attending COP21 has re-inspired me. The urgency is real. The problem is here, now. It is critical that the US play a large role in changing the world’s trajectory. We can all be a part of the solution, and we need to all be part of the solution. I saw Al Gore speak twice during the conference, and he shared this quote from the American poet, Robert Stevens, which has reverberated in my head since his talks. Stevens stated, “after the last no, comes a yes, and on that yes the future world depends.” The path that addresses the climate crisis, it not an easy one, but the world really does depend on people taking up this cause around the world and pushing for climate action.</p> <p><img alt="tower" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="03531ffd-3ccd-41d6-a876-4748b3469fae" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/IMG_6907.jpg" /></p> </div> <span><span>mcginna</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-13T10:16:23-05:00" title="Sunday, December 13, 2015 - 10:16">Sun, 12/13/2015 - 10:16</time> </span> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-above field--tags"> <h3 class="field__label field--tags__label">Tags</h3> <ul class="links field__items field--tags__items"> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/paris" hreflang="en">Paris</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/cop21" hreflang="en">COP21</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/cop17" hreflang="en">COP17</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/durban" hreflang="en">Durban</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/south-africa" hreflang="en">South Africa</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/paris-agreement" hreflang="en">Paris Agreement</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/ambition" hreflang="en">ambition</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/iraq" hreflang="en">Iraq</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/al-gore" hreflang="en">Al Gore</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/robert-stevens" hreflang="en">Robert Stevens</a></li> <li class="field--tags__item"><a href="/tags/unfccc" hreflang="en">UNFCCC</a></li> </ul> </div> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Sun, 13 Dec 2015 15:16:23 +0000 mcginna 35 at COP21 Goes into Overtime <span>COP21 Goes into Overtime</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>COP21, scheduled to end on Friday, December 11, will continue on Saturday. Extension of the annual negotiating meeting beyond the planned closing time has become commonplace. This time there were hopeful speculations that they would finish on time, fed by a more positive atmosphere at the COP than in the past, and by relatively rapid progress that was being made in negotiating the text for the Paris agreement. But the parts of the text left in brackets, meaning still contested and under negotiation among Parties, are some of the most diifficult to resolve. One contested issue that appears to have been resolved, assuming that it is not reopened on Saturday, is the long-term goal. Some Parties advocated that the goal should be to limit global temperature increase to below 2 degrees C from the pre-inustrial level, while others advocated for 1.5 degrees. The compromise text reads "holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above preindustrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C."</p> <p>Remaining issues to be resolved are how the agreement will differentiate the roles and responsibilities of developed and developing countries, provision of finance to support climate actions by developing countries, and whether, how and how often often Parties will be called on to revise their plans for reducing emissions so as to become more "ambituous" over time. The latter point reflects the reality that the reductions represented in countries' Intended Nationally Determined Contributions would not limit warming to below 2 degrees C.</p> </div> <span><span>learyn</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-12T02:07:48-05:00" title="Saturday, December 12, 2015 - 02:07">Sat, 12/12/2015 - 02:07</time> </span> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Sat, 12 Dec 2015 07:07:48 +0000 learyn 34 at Comparing Climate Mitigation Efforts - Tool for International Linkages and Building Ambition <span>Comparing Climate Mitigation Efforts - Tool for International Linkages and Building Ambition</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>A side-event convened by Harvard University and the Fondazione Centro Studi Enel on December 9 addressed the need for comparing the national mitigation efforts that Parties to the UNFCCC have proposed in the “Intended Nationally Determined Contributions” (INDCs) that they have submitted to the UNFCCC. The INDCs are the foundation on which the agreement that is emerging at COP21 in Paris is being constructed. The INDCs are statements made by individual nations of the actions they intend to take to address climate change, each of which addresses mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, and many of which also address adaptation to climate change and other actions. This bottom—up approach is highly flexible, enabling each country to decide for itself its own targets and actions, based on its own assessment of its capabilities and circumstances. While the approach has important advantages that have facilitated broad participation of both developed and developing countries in mitigation efforts, it also poses some challenges. One widely acknowledged challenge is that the INDCs, when added up, will fail to reduce GHG emissions to a level that would limit global warming to less than 2 degrees C. A second is that the diversity in types of targets and actions that nations have proposed for themselves makes it difficult to compare efforts across nations.</p> <p> </p> <p>Speakers at the event noted a number of reasons why comparison of efforts embodied by the INDCs is needed. First is to be able to estimate their aggregate effects on future emissions of GHGs and future climate. Second is to enable countries to ascertain whether other countries are following through on their commitments and doing their fair share. Third, it allows the public, civil society groups and businesses to understand the efforts being made by different countries and to use this information to advocate for greater ambition and/or adjustments to address issues of cost-effectiveness and competition. Finally, and this was key for the members of the panel, is that the information needed for comparisons can facilitate linking efforts for cooperation across international borders in ways that can reduce costs and support more ambitious emission reductions.</p> <p> </p> <p>Many of the points discussed at the event are made in a paper by Joseph Aldy, which you can access <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p><img alt="panel" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="f52298e7-305e-4c35-a459-eea8798f9515" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/2015-01-01%2000.00.00-13.jpg" /></p> <p> </p> <p> </p> </div> <span><span>learyn</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-10T05:01:57-05:00" title="Thursday, December 10, 2015 - 05:01">Thu, 12/10/2015 - 05:01</time> </span> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Thu, 10 Dec 2015 10:01:57 +0000 learyn 33 at John Kerry Announces US Funding for Climate Change Adaptation <span>John Kerry Announces US Funding for Climate Change Adaptation</span> <span><span>mcginna</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-10T03:40:12-05:00" title="Thursday, December 10, 2015 - 03:40">Thu, 12/10/2015 - 03:40</time> </span> Thu, 10 Dec 2015 08:40:12 +0000 mcginna 32 at A Growing Call for 1.5 Degrees Celsius <span>A Growing Call for 1.5 Degrees Celsius</span> <span><span>mcginna</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-10T03:28:24-05:00" title="Thursday, December 10, 2015 - 03:28">Thu, 12/10/2015 - 03:28</time> </span> Thu, 10 Dec 2015 08:28:24 +0000 mcginna 31 at Lighting the Eiffel Tower, Emblem of a Climate Revolution <span>Lighting the Eiffel Tower, Emblem of a Climate Revolution</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>On Saturday, December 5, I attended a viewing party for the lighting of the Eiffel Tower with the <a href="" target="_blank">Climate Sign</a> and messages about climate change. This project of the artist Yann Toma and Jacob Scherr of NRDC was their obsession for nearly a year. Jacob wrote about the intent of the project <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p><img alt="speaker" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="3aea1f0b-f2b6-45f3-91d7-d768ec6117bd" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/2015-01-01%2000.00.00-56_0.jpg" /></p> <p><img alt="paris" data-entity-type="file" data-entity-uuid="434ae8aa-2757-467d-8c74-2e7c861c753d" src="/sites/default/files/inline-images/2015-01-01%2000.00.00-68.jpg" /></p> </div> <span><span>learyn</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-08T14:10:58-05:00" title="Tuesday, December 8, 2015 - 14:10">Tue, 12/08/2015 - 14:10</time> </span> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Tue, 08 Dec 2015 19:10:58 +0000 learyn 30 at A Strategy to Accelerate Climate Action <span>A Strategy to Accelerate Climate Action</span> <div class="text-content clearfix field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>On Monday I participated in a “High-Level Chatham House Dialogue” organized by the Citizen’s Climate Lobby (CCL) and facilitated by Joe Robertson, CCL’s Global Strategy Director. The group assembled for the dialogue included representatives from the energy sector, investment management, sustainable business, civil society and higher education, as well as myself. The purpose? To share perspectives on accelerating climate action. A variety of views were expressed. But one that was shared by all the participants, including those from the energy and private sectors, is that market prices for fossil energy do not reflect their full cost. Missing are the environmental, human health and climate change costs that result from extracting fossil energy, bringing it to market, and burning it. Catalyzing rapid climate action, it was agreed, requires individuals, firms, and public sector actors to shift their decision making, behaviors and investments in ways that reflect the full cost of fossil energy, which some participants estimate to be in the range of $40 to over $100 per ton of carbon in addition to the private costs of fossil energy production. Other views that seemed to have general acceptance among the participants include the importance of transparency and accountability of private and public sector actors, the need to engage a wide range of actors at multiple scales reaching from the individual to the global, the wisdom of a ‘bottom up’ approach that is made up of a patchwork of different actions by different actors (INDCs being just one example) to address the ‘wicked problem’ of climate change, and the importance of communicating the substantial progress represented by INDCs, despite recognition that they are not sufficiently ambitious.</p> <p> </p> <p>This event in Paris is the second in a series of dialogs that CCL is hosting. The first was held in October in Minneapolis, MN. You can read about it <a href="">here</a>.</p> </div> <span><span>learyn</span></span> <span><time datetime="2015-12-08T13:10:05-05:00" title="Tuesday, December 8, 2015 - 13:10">Tue, 12/08/2015 - 13:10</time> </span> <section data-drupal-selector="comments" class="comments"> <h2 class="comments__title">Comments</h2> </section> Tue, 08 Dec 2015 18:10:05 +0000 learyn 28 at