Universal Energy Access

Photo from UN Women

A side event today, entitled “Achieving Universal Energy Access: A development imperative in addressing climate change,” highlighted the need to address global energy poverty. In examining a need to address climate change on a global scale, the emphasis is often on less, not more. But the reality is that 20% of the world lives without sufficient…
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Ad Hoc REDD+ Projects: Warning that REDD+ May be Broken

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Today, a panel of experts from CIFOR and the European Forest Institute presented on the importance of including local people in REDD+ projects. The panel reviewed REDD+ initiatives created ad hoc in the absence of a fully functioning international program. These are regional, state, or local—rather than national— initiatives. Crucially, they offer lessons for the…
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A Preview: REDD+ at the Global Landscape Forum

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REDD+ is a major agenda item at COP 20. In particular, attention will be paid to methodological issues and the implementation of safeguards within the REDD+ program. At the Global Landscape Forum, a COP 20 side event, panels will discuss various aspects pertaining to REDD+. The GLF will offer information both on technological and methodological…
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Celebreality: How a public figure can use their fan base to spread awareness about climate change.

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On September 24, the UNFCCC’s Momentum for Change initiative teamed with UNEP Goodwill Ambassador and actor Ian Somerhalder to produce a documentary on climate change. Momentum for Change illuminates activities underway across the globe that are moving the world toward a highly resilient, low-carbon future. Christiana Figueres blogged about the release of the documentary. Her…
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Side (event) . . .

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Side events can more than occupy one’s time at a COP.  Presented by a range of actors — academics, activists, businesses, government agencies — they can range in content and quality.  Thus I was fortunate that the few I attended at COP19, given my focus on tracking the ADP negotiations, were fascinating and informative. On the…
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Gender Day – UNFCCC’s Christiana Figueres gives no love to (coal) scrubs, calls on women to demand climate action

Today is Gender Day at the UNFCCC COP19. The purpose of Gender Day is to raise awareness on gender in the climate change context. It is not just a thematic day, it is a legal mandate from the Doha Climate Gateway, Decision 23/CP.18, to examine gender balance in the UNFCCC negotiations. “2. [The Conference of the…
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Powerful Statements from the Plenary

I am not one of the three in our group in the plenary today, but I have been watching the live streaming for the past 4 hours.  Various heads of states are now giving their 5-10 minutes statements.  I just listened to the Prime Minister of Mali, Modibo Sidibe and the President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez. …
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Via Campesina & Sustainable Agriculture

  While a portion of our team was able to make it into the Bella Center for the COP yesterday, a few of us headed over to the Kilmaforum for a fantastic presentation by La Via Campesina called “Small Scale Sustainable Farmers are Cooling Down the Earth.”  This diverse panel included small-scale farmers and activists…
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Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed: “Leaders will only understand things when the people understand things.”

At “Advancing work on adaptation to climate change:  A United Nations system perspective,” top officials from five U.N. agencies spoke to a packed room.  They called for collaboration and cooperation between all U.N. agencies to be provided in any text to come out of COP15.  Speakers included Achim Steiner, Executive Director of the United Nations…
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Al Gore et. al. Present New Report on Melting Ice

I just witnessed the unveiling of an important new report, sponsored and presented by Al Gore and Gro Harlem Brundtland (yes, that Brundtland), Greenland Ice Sheet – Melting Snow and Ice: Calls for Action. Other global heavyweights that presented were the world-renowned scientist Dorthe Dahl-Jensen, the Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller, Norwegian Foreign Minister…
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Reparations: Making Wealthy Countries Pay for Their Contribution to Climate Change

A major human rights concern in climate change is that of environmentally displaced persons (EDPs):  people who are forced to leave their homes because of environmental causes ranging from climate change, development projects, industrial accidents, environmental degradation, the environmental aftermath of war, and lack of natural resources.  The Red Cross has already declared that more…
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