Religion & Climate Change: How the Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change Affects COP Negotiations

Photograph Credit: Islamic Relief

“Our species, though selected to be a caretaker or steward (khalifah) on the earth, has been the cause of such corruption and devastation on it that we are in danger [of] ending life as we know it on our planet.” Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change On August, 18th, 2015, a group of Muslim scholars,…
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GHGs in the Gulf

saudi oil

Newsflash:  Saudi Arabia has filed its intended nationally determined contribution (INDC) for mitigating GHG emissions under the UNFCCC.  Yup, a country that depends on oil for 80% of its national budget publicly filed a document on November 10 laying out its efforts to combat climate change. Andrew Freedman of Mashable points to a comment that Christiana…
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Will the Dark Cloud Over EPA’s Clean Power Plan Rain on Paris?

Powerplant.iStock

Last month, EPA published the Clean Power Plan (CPP), the most ambitious and controversial rulemaking in the history of the Clean Air Act, and set off a flurry of litigation as many Republican lawmakers urged states to challenge the rule. The Clean Power Plan is EPA’s first attempt to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from existing…
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ADP Co-Chairs Briskly Move Forward to Paris @UNFCCC #ADP2 #ConspiracyTheory

Co-Chairs

If the U.N. climate negotiations are like middle school, then Twitter is where the hallway gossip happens. As the first day of the ADP 2-11 session wrapped up Monday, whispers of an alleged “U.S. conspiracy to sink Paris” began trending on Twitter.  The buzz made its way to the CAN International press briefing room when a…
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Outside the ADP negotiation rooms

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Some days at UNFCCC negotiations, the glass looks more full outside the negotiating rooms. Given the 4am revisions of the negotiation texts, meetings today started off slowly.  The ADP gathered in the late morning to acknowledge the new text, send the G77 and other negotiating groups off for coordination on it, and announce the afternoon and evening “spin off…
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I will, if you will

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 A comment in this week’s Nature concludes that the current route to Paris is too self-centered and not cooperative enough. Its authors, researchers from the Universities of Cambridge, Maryland, and Cologne, advise UNFCCC Parties to focus on the common commitment to a global price of carbon. Professor David MacKay of the University of Cambridge told…
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Looming deadlines – for INDCs and the Earth

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With the October 1 deadline for all State Parties’ Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) looming, the UNFCCC submission portal for them has been heating up.  As of this writing, 82 State Parties have filed. Switzerland, the EU, Norway, Mexico, and the United States were the first five in the door, submitting before the first quarter 2015 deadline for…
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A Woman Saving the Planet

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This week’s New Yorker leads off with a “Reporter at Large” article by science writer Elizabeth Kolbert (The Sixth Extinction), The Weight of the World: Can one woman get the U.N. to save the planet?  While ostensibly about UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres – answering the subtitled question, “can [she] persuade humanity to save itself?”…
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“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times”

tale of two cities

“… it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we…
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As goes California, so goes the Nation?

California solar

Just a month after the U.S. submitted its Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the UNFCCC Secretariat, California Governor Jerry Brown has announced new, ambitious GHG emission mitigation goals for the state. While the U.S. is being chided internationally for its INDCs’ lack of mitigation and adaptation “ambition,” California is getting the limelight for stepping…
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Inside out: U.S. domestic political will and bilateral negotiation with India

Yale Republican poll

Bill Clinton was famous for saying during his 1992 presidential campaign, “It’s the economy, stupid.”  In the realm of international climate change negotiations from Lima to Paris, it’s fair to say “it’s the nationally determined contributions, mon ami.”  Deliberately intended to connect the UNFCCC goal (of keeping global warming below 2 or 1.5 Celsius) more concretely with national political and economic…
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From Lima to Paris: The Road Ahead to COP21/CMP11

Catherine Craig, third from left.

This post was written by Vermont Law School COP20/CMP10 Observer Delegation members Archer Christian, Catherine Craig, Rebecca Davidson, Carla Santos, Cynthia Sirois, and Professor Tracy Bach. As the action in Lima comes to a close, the question becomes: What has COP20/CMP10 set into play for the negotiations in Paris next year? This COP was styled…
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ADP Workstream 2: The most pressing and immediate of needs shuffled to end of queue

Exhibit in Lima, Peru

Under the ADP, two ‘workstreams’ were created to meet climate change goals. Workstream 1 was created to identify Individual Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) that will be signed at the Paris 2015 COP; Workstream 2 was created to fill the ‘gap’ between present and the 2020 date of implementation of the Paris 2015 agreement. Since the…
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