By Michele Betsill, Former Research Fellow, Environment and Natural Resources Program, 1999-2000
Geoengineering grows in salience, the more time that passes without an effective international regime for mitigating climate change. It will be in the background of negotiations at COP 17 in Durban—and, perhaps, in the foreground of some important discussions. This discussion paper by Daniel Bodansky explores the opportunities and risks presented by geoengineering, as well as the particular challenges to crafting an effective system of governance for this set of approaches to addressing climate change
By Phillip Williamson, Robert Watson, Georgina Mace, Paulo Artaxo, Ralph Bodle, Victor Galaz, Andy Parker, Former Associate, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, July 31, 2014–November 2014; Research Fellow, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, August 20, 2012–July 30, 2014, David Santillo, Chris Vivian, David Cooper, Jaime Webbe, Annie Cung and Emma Woods
Working from a mandate from the 2010 Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), this report compiles and synthesizes available scientific information on the possible impacts of geoengineering techniques on biodiversity, including preliminary information on associated social, economic, and cultural considerations.
Theo de Bruijn
"Conclusions: Lessons for the Design and Use of Voluntary, Collaborative, and Information-Based Approaches to Environmental Policy"
Industrial Transformation evaluates the effectiveness of twelve innovative, voluntary, collaborative, and information-based programs, focusing particularly on the effectiveness of these programs in bringing about industrial transformation — changes in production and consumption structures that will help move their societies toward environmental sustainability.
Journal Article, Innovations, issue 4, volume 4
Matthew Bunn and Martin B. Malin examine the conditions needed for nuclear energy to grow on a scale large enough for it to be a significant part of the world’s response to climate change. They consider the safety, security, nonproliferation, and waste management risks associated with such growth and recommend approaches to managing these risks. Bunn and Malin argue that although technological solutions may contribute to nuclear expansion in the coming decades, in the near term, creating the conditions for large-scale nuclear energy growth will require major international institutional innovation.
By Graham Allison, Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs; Douglas Dillon Professor of Government, Harvard Kennedy School, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Ashton B. Carter, Former Co-Director, Preventive Defense Project, Harvard & Stanford Universities, John M. Deutch, International Council Member, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Richard A. Falkenrath, Former Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Former Principal Investigator, Executive Session on Domestic Preparedness; Former Executive Director for Research, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, John P. Holdren, Former Director and Faculty Chair, Science, Technology and Public Policy Program, Robert Newman, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 1995-1996 and Joseph S. Nye, Harvard University Distinguished Service Professor
Unpublished memorandum to the United States Senate
November 19, 2014
Op-Ed, The Boston Globe
By Nicholas Burns, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Politics, Harvard Kennedy School
It is far too early to count out President Obama as a foreign policy lame duck.
During last week's successful Asia trip, Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping announced an important Climate Change agreement along with technology, visa and military transparency deals. This is a welcome sign that the US and China are capable of taking on tough challenges together.
But, there are other international obstacles ahead for Obama. Can he face down Vladimir Putin on Ukraine and find a way to reach a deal with Iran to block its nuclear ambitions?
Are we witnessing an Obama revival on foreign policy?
This short paper explores the security implications of climate change, focusing on the impacts on developing countries, particularly weak states. Security risks related to climate change will not be evenly distributed globally and will affect some kinds of governments more than others. While local and regional consequences of climate change remain very difficult to predict, three types of nations seem particularly vulnerable to the security risks of climate change: least-developed nations, weak states, and undemocratic states. Poor developing countries are the perhaps the most likely to suffer from climate change. These states lack the economic, governance, or technical capabilities to adapt to climate change. Failed and failing states—those with weak institutions of government, poor control over their borders, repressed populations, or marginal economies—stand a higher risk of being destabilized by climate change. The paper recommends a renewed emphasis on risk reduction and disaster preparedness with early warning systems that integrate meteorological risk with political risk.