Science and Society: IPCC Reform and the Global Climate Challenge

Date:
Tuesday, November 16, 2010 from 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

Location:
Columbia University, Morningside Campus, International Affairs Building, Kellogg Conference Center, Room 1501

Contact:
Marie-Zenaide Jolys, mj2412@columbia.edu or call 212-854-2056

RSVP:
Register

Event Description:
Speakers: Simon Buckle, Director, Climate Policy, Grantham Institute, Imperial College; Peter Haas, Professor of Political Science, University of Massachusetts, Amherst; David Krantz, Director, Center for Research on Environmental Decisions (CRED), Columbia University; Syukuro Manabe, Senior Meteorologist, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Princeton; Jeffrey D. Sachs, Director, The Earth Institute, Columbia University; Laurence Tubiana, Sciences Po-Columbia Alliance Visiting Professor, Columbia University

The Earth Institute, the Columbia Climate Center, the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Affairs (IDDRI) at Sciences Po, the Alliance Program, and the School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University present "Science and Society: IPCC Reform and the Global Climate Challenge."

Open to the registered public, RSVP required.

For more information on the Columbia Climate Center visit www.climate.columbia.edu

For more information on the Earth Institute visit  www.earth.columbia.edu

For more information on IDDRI, go to www.iddri.org

For more information on the Alliance Program, go to www.columbia.edu/cu/alliance

 

The objective of this panel discussion is to highlight the controversy relating to our understanding of evolving climate science and the possible responses of policy-makers, and discuss some of the issues it raises leading to a reflection on the reform of the IPCC and the role of science in policy-making.  Panelists will present the major controversies surrounding climate change today, with a special focus on the heightened scrutiny surrounding the IPCC assessment reports, and address the question of whether climate research efforts are resulting in the production of useful, policy-relevant scientific information for decision-makers and whether IPCC reform is necessary and if so, in what way?

While the key points of contention that undermined the Copenhagen negotiations remain unresolved (e.g. emission reduction targets, financing levels and the legal status of the Kyoto Protocol), there is more and more consensus on the strong need for increased coordination and information sharing between climate scientists and policy-makers, particularly in light of the failures of COP-15 and the lessons learned from it.

Nevertheless, the intersection of climate science and public policy remains controversial given the many competing interests that are at stake, including the interests of future generations and the diverse interests of all nations, regions, and sectors of society around the world.

The quality of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports has been thrown into question in light of several errors found in the 4th Assessment Report, and in the wake of the University of East Anglia email scandal. At the root of these criticisms lies a perennial dilemma: how should policy makers and scientists negotiate the delicate boundary between science and society? In a field such as climate change, which is both highly technical and has large implications for public policy, the balancing process can pose many challenges.

The objective of this panel discussion is to highlight the controversy relating to our understanding of evolving climate science and the possible responses of policy-makers, and discuss some of the issues it raises leading to a reflection on the reform of the IPCC and the role of science in policy-making. Panelists will present the major controversies surrounding climate change today, with a special focus on the heightened scrutiny surrounding the IPCC assessment reports, and address the question of whether climate research efforts are resulting in the production of useful, policy-relevant scientific information for decision-makers and whether IPCC reform is necessary and if so, in what way?

Introduction: Jeffrey Sachs, Director, Earth Institute, Columbia University
Panelists: Simon Buckle, Director, Climate Policy, Grantham Institute, Imperial College;Peter Haas, Professor of Political Science, UMass Amherst; Syukuro Manabe, Senior Meteorologist, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Princeton; Laurence Tubiana, Sciences Po-Columbia Alliance Visiting Professor, Columbia University
Moderator: David Krantz, Director, CRED, Columbia University


Sponsors:
Earth Institute

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