Climate Change Adaptation in a Post-Durban World
Most of the debate at the recent climate change conference in Durban, South Africa—the 17th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change or COP17—focused on the future of the climate change regime after the current Kyoto protocol expires. While not at the forefront of media coverage, COP17 also took important steps on the funding and planning of climate change adaptation activities.
On January 6, the Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement hosted a discussion on the post-Durban way forward for climate change adaptation activities, including the Green Climate Fund, National Adaptation Plans and the Adaptation Committee. Panelists included: Andrew Steer, special envoy for climate change at the World Bank; Nancy Birdsall, president of the Center for Global Development; and Brookings Nonresident Fellow Nathan Hultman. With a focus on human mobility, panelists also discussed the potential impacts of these decisions on displacement, migration and planned relocation, as outlined in last year’s COP16 Cancun agreement. Senior Fellow Elizabeth Ferris, co-director of the Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement, provided introductory remarks and moderated the discussion.
After the program, panelists took audience questions.
Head of the Environmental Migration, Social Vulnerability and Adaptation Section, United Nations University
Center for Global Development
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[On the Global Climate Action Summit] I think that this summit’s been very useful. It’s a demonstration of activism, it’s a demonstration of will, it’s a demonstration of engagement by all sorts of sub-national players, and I think that’s all been tremendously useful. But, it doesn’t fill the gap of the absence of the United States at a national level. The US federal government can drive action all around the entire country, not just state-by-state.