Mapping resilience

royal society

As delegates begin arriving in Lima for the start of COP20/CMP10 on Monday, a new report from the Royal Society underscores the need for more urgency in climate change mitigation negotiations.  The Royal Society, which was founded in 1660 and serves as the United Kingdom’s independent scientific academy, released today Resilience to Extreme Weather, which…
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… by side (event)

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The second of two fascinating and informative side events mentioned in my last post was hosted by the Global Canopy Programme, to launch its newest publication, The Little Book of Big Deforestation Drivers (which Alisha covered well here).  What caught my attention most was not the the research done to document and calculate the individual and cumulative supply…
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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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UN starts seriously working with cities.

My very last “low-level” side event, I ended with some positive news about progress in cities throughout the world. Not only are cities making progress, but they are starting to get recognition and assistance from the international community. The representative form the World Bank said, “We realize we need to partner with cities” For the…
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Failure to include local governments

On Friday night at 8:15, I went to a very well attended side event on local government. Panelists included Felix Gonzalez Canto the Governor of Quintana Roo State and mayors from Denmark, Vancouver, Mexico City and North Little Rock, AR. Even though all the panelists are elected government officials, they are only allowed ‘non-governmental organization’…
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Local Partnerships for City Adaptation

  On December 3rd, NOAA sponsored a side event to discuss lessons learned from air quality monitoring in Mexico City and LA over the last 20 years.  The event began with a technical explanation by NOAA of how climate forcing agents and air quality producing pollutants are often the same. The spokesperson from NOAA suggested…
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Senator John Kerry: “Amateur hour is over. It’s time for science fact to trump science fiction.”

Wednesday, December 16, our last day in the Bella Center due to NGO restrictions, was an intense day.  In the first meeting, we witnessed the resignation of COP15 President Connie Hedegaard and several Heads of State statements, as well as the concern from developing countries regarding the imposition of the Danish text. I left the…
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Transparency & Civilian Participation Falls Apart at COP15

After a disappointing day for many of us, who waited in seemingly endless lines to nowhere, the COP has essentially come to an early end… at least for observers. As anticipated, COP15 has become the most attended climate COP to date.   Unfortunately, the Bella Center in Copenhagen (capacity of 15,000) is not large enough to…
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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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Renewable Energy Advocates Get Upclose Look at Middelgrunden Windfarm.

Denmark has been a leader in renewable and clean energy for over 40 years.  While some policies were perhaps misguided, like banning car use on Sundays in the 1970’s, slow but steady expansion of the country’s renewable energy portfolio has allowed the country to maintain its emission levels while boasting of continuing healthy economic expansion. …
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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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