Selin and Najam in The Conversation on Marrakesh Climate Talks

Marrakesh, Morroco

Adil Najam, Dean of the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, and Associate Professor of International Relations Henrik Selin collaborated on an Op-Ed that lays out how parties at the upcoming 2016 United Nations Climate Conference in Marrakesh, Morocco need to follow up on the gains made during the Paris climate talks of 2015.

While the upcoming negotiations collectively termed COP22 may not result in the significant agreement that resulted from the Paris talks, Najam and Selin argue that it will be critical toward continuing the progress made by the Paris Agreement.

The Op-Ed, entitled “Global Climate Talks Move to Marrakesh: Here’s What They Need to Achieve,” was published by The Conversation on November 2, 2016.

From the text of the article:

Even though evidence on an ever-worsening global climate keeps pouring in with alarming frequency, the last 12 months have, in fact, been a relatively good year for global climate policy. Next week, the world’s countries meet in Marrakesh, Morocco, to follow up on the gains made at Paris last year, and to try to reconcile these two facts.

The 22nd conference of the parties (COP22) to the U.N. climate change convention in Marrakesh will not result in a grand agreement or the grandiose chest-thumping that characterized its Paris predecessor. Yet, this meeting is a critical test of whether the parties to the Paris Agreement are willing to realize, or capable of realizing, the promise of Paris and creating a momentum for action.

COP22 will begin with good wind behind its sails, but under some very ominous clouds.

The most visible political gain has been the ratification in record time of the Paris Agreement, which enters into force Nov. 4. By joining, countries have shown a willingness to act on reducing national emissions, although they stopped short of taking on legal commitments. Notwithstanding the fact that the agreement is weak in terms of legally binding obligations, this rapid ratification signifies an important global buy-in.

You can read the entire article here.

Najam was a co-author for the Third and Fourth Assessments of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC); work for which the scientific panel was awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for advancing the public understanding of climate change science. In 2008 he was invited by the United Nations Secretary General to serve on the UN Committee on Development (CDP). Learn more about him here. 

Prior to his current faculty position, Selin was a Wallenberg Research Fellow in Environment and Sustainability in the Environmental Policy and Planning Group, Department of Urban Studies and Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2001-04), an Associate with the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (2001-03), and an Associate with the Center for International Development, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (2003-04). Learn more about him here.