View the latest CIERP Research Update here.
November 15, 2013
Professor Moomaw comments on the importance of access to sanitation
In a CNBC article highlighting the many people across the world who still lack access to basic sanitation services, Professor Moomaw comments on the many health risks and the urgency of action. "Think of living in a giant cesspool and then you get some idea of the problem. It's a life and death issue for those who don't have access to good sanitation. The spread of disease like cholera and typhus from lack of proper sanitation is just horrific." The article comes ahead of World Toilet Day, observed November 19. According to the article, World Toilet Day was officially designated by the United Nations this year "in an effort to make sanitation a global development priority."
Read the full article here.
October 31, 2013
Professor Patrick Verkooijen comments on the economics of climate action during UN Ambassadors event in New York
A recent “Friends on Climate Change” meeting, hosted by Dr. Mark Lyall Grant, UK Ambassador to the United Nations, on October 31 in New York provided a platform for Dr. Patrick Verkooijen, CIERP Non-Resident Professor of Practice of Sustainable Development Diplomacy and Special Representative for Climate Change of the World Bank, to underscore that climate change in our lifetime threatens to roll back development gains we have made so far. He emphasized that every region will be affected, and those least able to adapt – the poor and most vulnerable – will be hit hardest. Even with a 2 degree warmer world we will see widespread food and water shortages, more extreme weather, higher sea levels, and increased coastal flooding. In Sub-Saharan Africa by the 2030s droughts will leave 40 percent of the land now growing maize unable to grow that crop. Last month's IPCC report concluded with 95 percent certainty that humans have been causing global warming over the last 6 decades.
October 30, 2013
The Promise of Restorative Grazing
CIERP’s Agriculture, Forests, and Biodiversity Program hosted Seth Itzkan, President of Planet-TECH Associates, on October 30 for a talk entitled “Climate Mitigation 2.0 – The Promise of Restorative Grazing: Counter-Intuitive Approaches for Reversing Desertification and Global Warming While Meeting Human Needs.” The lecture continued the discussion begun at Fletcher last year with a visit by Allan Savory, Founder and President of Savory Institute, who will return to Fletcher for a public event and closed student workshop on November 22-23. Savory and Itzkan research and advocate for holistic management of natural resources.
Itzkan began his lecture by defining “Climate Mitigation 2.0” as the idea of restorative development, in contrast to “Version 1.0,” which was primarily focused on reducing use of fossil fuels. He argued that livestock, properly managed, can be a facsimile for wild herding ruminants – and should thus be recognized as a goal of sustainable development efforts.
Read the complete event summary...
October 29, 2013
Kartikeya Singh writes perspective piece for Sustainability Outlook in India
Kartikeya Singh, a Fletcher PhD candidate and CIERP Junior Research Fellow, has a new article in Sustainability Outlook, a "market access, insight and collaboration platform tracking actions related to sustainability in the Indian economy." The piece was published in the lead up to the Sustainable Leadership Business Forum that was held in Delhi on October 17th. Titled "Innovate or Deteriorate," the article posits that innovation for the base of the pyramid is a critical strategy for companies seeking to be sustainable in the Indian market. Singh, who is also co-founder of the Indian Youth Climate Network, is currently in India conducting field research on energy access and innovation in India, with support from a Boren Award for International Study.
Access his piece here.
October 24, 2013
Energizing Sustainable Cities: Findings from the Global Energy Assessment
On Thursday, October 24, CIERP hosted Arnulf Grubler of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis and Yale University, who presented on “Energizing Sustainable Cities: Findings from the Global Energy Assessment.” The lecture was part of CIERP’s ongoing Energy, Climate, and Innovation Research Seminar series.
Grubler presented key highlights from Chapter 18 of the 2012 Global Energy Assessment (of which he was a lead author), noting the study was the “first international scientific assessment that explicitly addressed urbanization.” He began by addressing the rural versus urban debate on where to focus policy attention. Rural populations are expected to peak at 3.5 billion and decline after 2020, so “demand there is urgent.” However, Grubler argued, the main focus of sustainable energy policy should be on cities: “the dominant spatial form of human activity.” The world’s population is currently three-quarters urban, and that percentage will continue to grow.
Read the complete event summary...
October 22, 2013
Professor Cohn co-authors paper on environmental governance
Avery Cohn, Assistant Professor of Environment and Resource Policy, has co-authored (with Kate O'Neill, Erika Weinthal, Kimberly R. Marion Suiseeya, Steven Bernstein, Michael W. Stone, and Benjamin Cashore) a new paper titled "Methods and Global Environmental Governance," published in Annual Review of Environment and Resources this month. Professor Cohn is on leave from Fletcher for the 2013-14 academic year to complete a fellowship supported by the University of California, Berkeley Energy Biosciences Institute on the behavioral economics of pasture to cropland conversion in Brazil. He is an expert on the challenges and opportunities of tropical agricultural development under climate change, and his broader research agenda is to contribute to science and policy for sustainable global land use.
Access the paper here.
October 15, 2013
Former postdoctoral scholar published in WIREs Climate Change
Maria Petrova, a postdoctoral scholar at CIERP from 2011-2013, has authored a new article titled "NIMBYism revisited: public acceptance of wind energy in the United States," published by Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change this month. The paper draws on Petrova's postdoctoral research conducted at CIERP on the topic of NIMBYism (‘Not-In-My-Back-Yard’), which describes resistance to siting specific projects close to one's area of residence while exhibiting acceptance of similar projects elsewhere. Her article provides a collective call for a significant course shift: rather than proposing strategies to ‘overcome’ opposition, she asserts that research should focus on proposing how to make siting successful. She proposes the ‘ENUF’ framework – which stands for ‘Engage, Never use NIMBY, Understand, and Facilitate’ – as a step in that direction.
Access the article here.
October 12, 2013
China drives its way to no. 1 oil importer, overtaking US: Professor Gallagher comments
In an article in the Christian Science Monitor, Staff Writer David J. Unger reports that "China has topped the US as the biggest importer of oil in the world, according to government data released this week. It's more evidence of China's economic growth and America's shale drilling boom and increased efficiency, which has reduced its reliance on foreign oil." However, CIERP Director Kelly Sims Gallagher points out that despite this trend, "dramatic increases in public transportation, fuel-economy standards, or gas prices could derail China's demand for oil."
Read the full article here.
October 7, 2013
Manufacturing and Energy: Advantage USA?
"Could the United States become a low-cost manufacturing destination? The energy revolution in the U.S. is helping make that pipe dream a pipeline possibility." In an IndustryWeek article exploring this topic, CIERP Director Kelly Sims Gallagher comments on the impact of natural gas: "For manufacturers, the relatively cheap price of natural gas is a huge domestic competitive advantage. Our competitors in Asia are facing triple or quadruple prices for gas, which they are largely importing."
Access the full article here.
September 30, 2013
EPA regulations give Obama standing to influence global climate action, says Professor Gallagher
In her new commentary on GlobalPost, CIERP Director Kelly Sims Gallagher asserts that President Obama's EPA regulations create a moral argument for action by other countries on international climate policy. "Many countries have long been ready to act on climate change, but struggled to justify climate policies to their own people when the United States, the largest pollution emitter in the world, was not seriously pursuing emissions reductions," says Gallagher. She also encourages the President to pursue bilateral agreements. "Multilateral treaties are unlikely in the short term because the Senate is not likely to ratify climate-change treaties, but the president still has full authority to pursue international agreements with foreign nations. He should start with China."
Read the full article...
September 5, 2013
Professor Moomaw to receive Bicentennial Medal from Williams College
William Moomaw, Professor of International Environmental Policy at The Fletcher School, will be the Convocation Speaker at Williams College this Saturday, September 7. He will also be honored with a Bicentennial Medal, established in 1993 to commemorate the college’s 200th anniversary. Professor Moomaw received his undergraduate degree from Williams College and taught in the Williams chemistry department from 1964 to 1990 before coming to Tufts.
August 20, 2013
Professor Moomaw comments on leaked UN Climate Report
In a live interview with WBUR's Here and Now radio program, CIERP Professor William Moomaw helped to shed light on the IPCC climate report draft recently leaked ahead of its planned September release date. According to the New York Times, the report states "with near certainty that human activity is the cause of most of the temperature increases of recent decades, and warns that sea levels could conceivably rise by more than three feet by the end of the century if emissions continue at a runaway pace." When asked what repercussions a three foot sea level rise would have across the globe, Professor Moomaw explained that "Miami, New Orleans, New York, Boston, to say nothing of major coastal Chinese cities (would be affected) – in fact, among the top 10 cities to be damaged, India and China suffer the most and the U.S. probably second most in the world in terms of the numbers of cities that would be adversely affected."
Listen to or read the complete transcript of the interview here.
August 13, 2013
Celebration honoring Professor Moomaw rescheduled for October 18
Originally scheduled for April 19 but cancelled due to the events surrounding the Boston Marathon, our celebration honoring the distinguished career of Professor William Moomaw will now be held this fall on Friday, October 18. The event will be a different format than originally planned, this time featuring a lecture at 3:00pm by Princeton University Professor Robert Socolow, who, along with colleague Dr. Stephen Pacala, developed the famous “stabilization wedges” concept for combating climate change. Professor Socolow’s address will be followed by a reception at 4:30 to honor Professor Moomaw. Both events are open to the public (registration required) and will be located at The Fletcher School, 160 Packard Avenue in Medford. Professor Moomaw recently stepped down as Director of CIERP and will retire at the end of this academic year.
Find additional event details and register to attend here.
August 8, 2013
CIERP welcomes new Assistant Professor Avery Cohn
Avery Cohn, most recently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, has joined The Fletcher School as Assistant Professor of Environment and Resource Policy and will be a part of CIERP's core faculty group. Professor Cohn will be on leave from Fletcher for the 2013-14 academic year to complete a fellowship supported by the University of California, Berkeley Energy Biosciences Institute on the behavioral economics of pasture to cropland conversion in Brazil. He is an expert on the challenges and opportunities of tropical agricultural development under climate change, and his broader research agenda is to contribute to science and policy for sustainable global land use. He holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management from the University of California, Berkeley; a Master’s of Environmental Science from Yale University; and a B.S. from the University of California, Davis.
Read his complete bio here.
July 23, 2013
New case study explores global PV industry value chains, draws on evidence from China
"Innovation and Technology Transfer Across Global Value Chains: Evidence from China’s PV Industry," a new case study by CIERP Director Kelly Sims Gallagher and Predoctoral Fellow Fang Zhang published by the Climate & Development Knowledge Network, investigates how China inserted itself into global clean energy innovation systems by examining the case of the solar PV industry. It decomposes global PV industry value chains, and further determines the main factors shaping PV technology diffusion. The development trajectory of the PV industry in China indicates that innovation in cleaner energy technologies is a combination of global and national innovation processes, and that effective global coordination of PV innovation systems along the global PV value chain is significant for global clean energy development.
Download the case study here.
July 10, 2013
Fletcher Net Impact receives Gold chapter standing
Net Impact has announced the 2012-2013 Gold and Silver standings for Net Impact chapters, awarding The Fletcher School’s Net Impact chapter the prestigious Gold standing. These standings, based on the chapter’s performance this past academic year, represent the most outstanding chapters in the Net Impact network. This year, just 24% of over 300 Net Impact chapters worldwide achieved Gold standing.
"We were thrilled to learn of the achievement of Gold Chapter status. This is a great affirmation of highly engaged members, a dedicated student Executive Board, and supportive faculty and staff. Fletcher Net Impact believes in using the power of business to make a more socially and environmentally sustainable world, and this distinction as a Gold Chapter definitely confirms that commitment."
- Michael Reading, 2012-2013 Fletcher Net Impact Co-President
Jane Church and Laura Stankiewicz will co-lead the Fletcher Net Impact club in 2013-14.
Read the complete press release here.
July 1, 2013
Professor Gallagher succeeds Professor Moomaw as Director of CIERP
Kelly Sims Gallagher, Associate Professor of Energy and Environmental Policy at The Fletcher School, this month begins her new role as director of the Center for International Environment and Resource Policy, succeeding founding director Professor William Moomaw, who had led the Center for over 20 years. Professor Moomaw stepped down in June as he phases into retirement over the coming year. Professor Gallagher will continue to direct CIERP’s Energy, Climate, and Innovation Research Program, which she has led since she joined Fletcher in 2009. Her research focuses on energy and climate policy in both the United States and China, and she is particularly interested in the role of policy in spurring the development and deployment of cleaner and more efficient energy technologies both domestically and internationally.
Read more about Professor Gallagher here or on her personal website.
Read coverage in the Tufts Daily here.
June 25, 2013
CIERP Fellow presents on China's PV manufacturing industry
CIERP Doctoral Research Fellow Fang Zhang was a speaker at the Climate and Development Knowledge Network's (CDKN) Climate Technology & Development (CTD) project conference in Bonn, Germany, where she presented her research, conducted jointly with Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, on "Innovation and Technology Transfer Across Global Value Chains: Evidence from China’s PV Industry." Following a discussion of the importance of considering technology value chains when developing innovation policy for the industrializing economy, Fang presented a value chain analysis of China’s PV manufacturing industry, showing that vertical integration along the value chain had played a major role in increasing competitiveness of Chinese firms and also caused unplanned production clusters leading to a learning network and related process innovations. She also explained how continued and reliable support from the Chinese government in the face of export restrictions had contributed to the rise of the PV industry, and made a number of related policy recommendations, which can be found in the presentation linked below. Gallagher and Fang have also written a full-length case study on the topic (available here) as part of their collaboration on CDKN's CTD project, which aims to refocus national and international policy agendas in order to improve prospects for enhancing technology development, diffusion, and transfer in developing countries.
Access Fang's presentation slides here.
June 12, 2013
Ambitious emissions cap from China would send strong political signal to the world, says Prof. Gallagher
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, was quoted in an article by Nature this week examining climate policy in China in the lead up to the country's first emissions trading scheme set to launch in Shenzhen on June 18. Six more cities will pilot similar mechanisms this year, with a national market scheduled to launch in 2016. Nevertheless, China has yet to establish an absolute emissions cap, focusing instead on setting targets aimed at reducing carbon intensity (emissions per unit GDP). Professor Gallagher feels that an ambitious emissions cap "would send a strong political signal to the world," potentially even bolstering climate legislation efforts in the United States, where there has been continued political resistance. She also notes, however, the challenges of monitoring and enforcement, particularly in China. "Verifying emissions, for instance, will be difficult in such a large country." Other scholars note an "institutional void" in terms of whose responsibility this will be.
Read the complete article here.
June 10, 2013
Professor Gallagher presents to UN General Assembly on clean energy technology diffusion
Following on the heels of a report on the subject recently submitted by the UN Secretary General, the UN General Assembly has convened four workshops exploring opportunities to enhance development, transfer, and diffusion of clean and environmentally sound technologies. CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, delivered the keynote address at the 3rd such workshop on May 30, which focused on capacity building to enhance the development, adoption, and use of clean and environmentally sound technologies in developing countries. Her presentation was on "The Global Diffusion of Clean Energy Technologies: Lessons from China," which is also the subject of her new book, forthcoming from The Mit Press.
Access her presentation slides here and more on the workshop proceedings here.
June 5, 2013
Alum awarded Blakemore Freeman Fellowship
Luke Schoen F'10 has been selected for a Blakemore Freeman Fellowship to pursue advanced Chinese language study at the Tsinghua-Berkeley Inter-University Program. Previously, Luke was an Associate at the World Resources Institute’s Climate and Energy Program and the manager of the ChinaFAQs project, where he worked to facilitate a network of internationally renowned experts in answering critical questions about Chinese policy and action on energy and climate change, and about the implications for the United States. Luke's Master's thesis at Fletcher compared the status of smart grid development and deployment in the U.S. and China and explored opportunities for international collaboration. Congratulations, Luke!
Read more about the Blakemore Freeman Fellowship here.
May 31, 2013
Working Paper Explores Health Impacts of Environmental Regulations in China
In 1998, the Chinese government imposed stringent air pollution regulations, in one of the first large-scale regulatory attempts in a developing country. In a recent working paper titled "Environmental Regulations on Air Pollution in China and their Impact on Infant Mortality," Shinsuke Tanaka, Assistant Professor of Economics, finds that the infant mortality rate fell by 20 percent in the treatment cities designated as “Two Control Zones.” The greatest reduction in mortality occurred during the neonatal period, highlighting an important pathophysiologic mechanism, and was largest among infants born to mothers with low levels of education. The finding is robust to adjusting for pre-exiting trends. Further, a falsification test using deaths from causes unrelated to air pollution supports these findings.
Access the paper here.
May 29, 2013
New policy brief offers alternative vision for leadership in the
As a set of countries with development as their overriding priority and yet highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) are in a unique position to help broker a climate agreement that is informed by science and meets basic needs. This new policy brief by CIERP Junior Research Fellow and Fletcher PhD candidate Rishikesh Ram Bhandary, titled Following the LDCs: How Leadership in the Climate Regime Could Look, puts forward three ideas that could make such an agreement possible: focusing on clean energy services, tying mitigation commitments with development outcomes, and innovating by building coalitions of state and non-state actors to incorporate the momentum and learning happening outside of the immediate treaty process.
Download the brief here.
Read ClimateWire's coverage of the brief.
May 21, 2013
CIERP Researcher awarded Boren Fellowship for work on energy access
Kartikeya Singh, a PhD candidate at The Fletcher School and CIERP Junior Research Fellow, has received a Boren Award for International Study supporting his research on energy access and innovation in India. Specifically, he will be looking at the solar home lighting sector for the base of the pyramid, which has huge potential: the annual market size is approximately $2 billion, and there are 400 million people in India without access to electricity. He will also be taking advanced Hindi language classes. Congratulations, Kartikeya!
Read a summary of a presentation Kartikeya recently gave on energy access in India...
May 14, 2013
CIERP Postdoc speaks on public acceptance of wind energy in Massachusetts, featured on public access television
CIERP Postdoctoral Scholar Maria Petrova recently presented for Contemporary Science Issues and Innovations, a public access program produced by Science for the Public, a nonprofit organization in Belmont, Massachusetts, in collaboration with the Belmont Media Center. In her presentation, she considers the numerous factors that shape public attitudes toward wind energy, including economic, aesthetic and environmental concerns. Public support for renewable energies is an important consideration for policy-makers at the state and local level. Wind energy, which is particularly suitable to some areas of Massachusetts, has been broadly accepted where it has been deployed so far. However, communities differ considerably in their perceptions. Maria's presentation helps explain the differences of perception and experience in the Massachusetts communities of Falmouth, Hull and Kingston and how such views impact policy.
Watch the program here.
May 13, 2013
CIERP faculty and staff to lead International Program on the Management of Sustainability
For the 20th year this June, CIERP Director William Moomaw and Associate Director Mieke van der Wansem will be faculty at the International Program on the Management of Sustainability (IPMS) – an intensive 7-day executive education course in the Netherlands with participants from all over the world. This year's course will take place from June 9-16. The objective of the IPMS is to train participants in the techniques of multilateral dialogue to resolve the conflicts that arise in the context of implementing sustainable development. The IPMS teaches a mutual gains (or win-win) approach to negotiation. On the basis of role-playing exercises, lectures, and discussion groups, an integration of theory and practice is achieved that enables a dynamic, interactive learning process.
Click here for more information.
April 19, 2013
Renewable energy symposium cancelled in wake of tragic Boston Marathon events
Set to take place on Friday, April 19, "The Next Generation of Policies for Scaling up Renewable Energy," CIERP's 20th Anniversary symposium planned in honor of Center Director William Moomaw, was cancelled as a result of security concerns in the city and surrounding areas as authorities searched for suspects related to the Boston Marathon tragedy. While the symposium will not be rescheduled in its original form, we do intend to reschedule a celebration in honor of Professor Moomaw in the fall, details forthcoming. We thank everyone who had registered to attend for their interest and support, and also extend a special thanks to our planned speakers, Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes, President of the European Renewable Energy Council; John Howe F'84, Director of Public Affairs at FloDesign Wind Turbine; Eric Martinot, Senior Research Director at the Institute for Sustainable Energy Policies in Tokyo, Japan; and Janet Sawin F'93, FG'01, Partner at Sunna Research.
Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the tragic events in Boston.
April 16, 2013
New data and analysis available on US energy RD&D budgets
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, and Laura Diaz Anadon of the Harvard Kennedy School have tracked the U.S. Department of Energy’s energy research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) programs for the past several years, building upon earlier work by Paul de Sa, Ambuj Sagar, and John Holdren. They have just released their latest spreadsheet, updated to include the Obama Administration’s budget request for FY14, as well as commentary noting major changes from past years and new and continuing trends. Key observations include that the FY14 request is significantly higher than the FY12 budget, a 33% increase overall; the increase in basic energy sciences is also large compared with FY12; and there has been a huge decline in spending on deployment programs since the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act.
Access the data and full commentary here.
April 15, 2013
MALD thesis published in Energy Policy
Former CIERP research assistant Lasse Eisgruber, MALD 2012 and now Global Supply Chain Strategy Specialist at Siemens Wind Power, had an adapted version of his Master's thesis published in Energy Policy. The article, titled "The resource curse: Analysis of the applicability to the large-scale export of electricity from renewable resources," analyzes, through case studies on Laos, Mongolia, and the MENA region, the extent to which exporters of renewable electricity run into the danger of the resource curse.
Access the article here.
April 2, 2013
Prof. Moomaw and 28 other scientists submit advisory on Keystone XL Pipeline Supplementary EIS
CIERP Director William Moomaw, along with 28 other climate scientists, ecologists and health scientists submitted comments to the US Department of State regarding the supplementary environmental impact statement on the Keystone XL Pipeline proposal. The introduction is excerpted below:
"We have reviewed the draft Supplemental EIS, and find its assertions to be without merit in many critical areas. Also, it is disingenuous to claim that the revised proposal shortens the pipeline by 509 miles, since the southern portion is being built as a separate project, and the impacts of that portion are not included in this EIS. The full project still extends from more than 300 miles within Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. Furthermore, it is clearly designed to pick up additional heavy crude from the Bakken Marketlink projects in Montana and North Dakota, and these impacts are not adequately accounted for.
While we question many aspects of the EIS, we are particularly concerned with four issues related to the proposed pipeline: the claim that additional oil is needed in the United States from tar sand production in Canada, contribution to climate change, destructive ecological impacts and adverse human health consequences."
Read the complete scientific advisory statement here.
April 1, 2013
New policy brief highlights key developments achieved at Rio+20
"What was New at Rio+20? An Analysis of The Future We Want," a policy brief written by CIERP Fellow and Fletcher PhD candidate Rishikesh Bhandary, summarizes the key achievements of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, known as "Rio+20." His summary is informed by an analysis he conducted which traced the language of the conference's outcome document, The Future We Want, to previous international agreements. That analysis highlights – literally – the language that was newly developed at Rio+20. While he found that the majority of the text is reiteration of previously agreed commitments, The Future We Want did provide some basis to further strengthen sustainable development at various levels. The brief is published as part of CIERP's Energy, Climate, and Innovation program.
Access the brief and complete tracing analysis document here.
March 27, 2013
Saving Gorillas, Improving Communities
Ecotourism has always been popular. People enjoy getting up close to wild animals and experiencing what nature has to offer. Nevertheless, the earth's spectacular habitats are constantly under threat.
Bill Weber, a wildlife conservationist and co-founder of the Mountain Gorilla Project in Rwanda, has devoted his life to this cause. During a lecture at The Fletcher School on March 27 entitled Gorillas & Elephants, People & Parks: Lessons in Conservation and Conflict from Central Africa, Weber recounted his remarkable story that began more than four decades ago with a commitment to studying and protecting the gorillas of Rwanda while also bringing desperately needed ecotourism revenue to the country.
Read the complete event summary...
March 25, 2013
Energy Access: A Case for Reframing
In Africa, 585 million people are without electricity. Close to 1.3 billion people are without access to electricity worldwide while 2.7 billion burn biomass for cooking energy. Startling as they are, these figures, expected to rise in the coming years, might just well be the tip of an iceberg raising suspicion that the endeavor to provide equitable energy access to disadvantaged people could take many more years than previously imagined.
Kartikeya Singh, a PhD candidate at The Fletcher School and CIERP Junior Research Fellow, believes that existing frameworks for addressing climate change may come in conflict with the commitment to providing electricity to those having to live without it. During his presentation titled Let there be Light: Addressing the Energy Access Challenge through Innovation, Singh identified innovation as the key to ensuring energy access and also shared methods and instruments to tackle this formidable challenge currently faced by global policymakers.
Read the complete event summary...
March 14, 2013
BP executive and Fletcher alum addresses energy challenges and opportunities
"Energy is essential to the most basic aspects of development. The energy industry brings heat, light and mobility to the world – the scooters that take people to work, the lights that enable homework to be done, the refrigerators that hold a village’s stocks of medicine. So while we must not shy away from the impacts of what we do, neither should we forget that energy has been central to development – and still is."
Dev Sanyal F'88, Executive Vice President and Group Chief of Staff at BP, spoke on March 14 to a packed room of Fletcher graduate students, faculty, and other members of the Tufts Community about Getting Energy Right, in an event hosted by CIERP's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program. Dev joined the BP Group in 1989 and has since held a variety of positions globally.
"In my view getting energy right means we must address three big issues...
- First, sufficiency – is there enough energy to go round? If there is, is it affordable?
- Second, security – can we rely on our energy supplies?
- Third, sustainability – can we use energy for our needs without an unacceptable impact on the planet?"
(Photo by Alonso Nichols/Tufts University)
March 11, 2013
Diverging Interests, Crumbling Cohesion: Emergence of a Post-South World
Negotiating on contentious and deeply dividing issues at the multilateral level involves complexities and dynamics of its own, and when the canvass of negotiations broadens with ever higher stakes, once seemingly united groups may go through a process of fragmentation and a gradual shift from their earlier unified positions.
Rishikesh Bhandary, CIERP Junior Research Fellow and a PhD candidate at Fletcher, during a presentation entitled Emergence of a Post-South World: Evidence from the Climate Regime, said that developing countries are increasingly becoming vocal and adopting new strategies while leaving behind old formations to avoid sub-optimal lowest common denominator outcomes. Bhandary said that, within the South and the Group of 77 (G-77), there are divisions and a divergence of interests with regard to the protection of national interests, and that various new groupings have subsequently been formed in recent years depending on confluence of interests.
Read the complete event summary...
March 7, 2013
Professor Moomaw on declining sea ice in the Arctic... and the resulting resource chase
CIERP Director William Moomaw was quoted in an article by Mike Eckel of the Christian Science Monitor about China's push for an Arctic foothold:
“The lure of riches in the Arctic draws ever more companies and nations... And so far it’s been relatively amicable jousting and jostling there.”
Professor Moomaw spoke on the topic of Arctic Anxiety at the Tufts Energy Conference on March 2-3, and CIERP is co-hosting with Fletcher's Edward R. Murrow Center for Public Diplomacy and the Consulate General of Canada a conference titled Deadly Dance: Arctic Warming and Global Climate Change, taking place on March 25-26.
Read the full article here.
February 25, 2013
New paper explores opportunities to regulate N2O under the ozone regime
CIERP director William Moomaw recently co-authored (with Kanter D.R., Mauzerall D.L., Ravishankara A.R., Daniel J.S., Portmann R.W., Grabiel P., and Galloway J.N.) "A post-Kyoto partner: Considering the stratospheric ozone regime as a tool to manage nitrous oxide," published by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.
Abstract (excerpt): Nitrous oxide (N2O) is the largest known remaining anthropogenic threat to the stratospheric ozone layer. However, it is currently only regulated under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol because of its simultaneous ability to warm the climate. The threat N2O poses to the stratospheric ozone layer, coupled with the uncertain future of the international climate regime, motivates our exploration of issues that could be relevant to the Parties to the ozone regime (the 1985 Vienna Convention and its 1987 Montreal Protocol) should they decide to take measures to manage N2O in the future.
Access the paper here.
February 21, 2013
Professors Moomaw and Everett at it again
Every February, Fletcher students gather for an anticipated annual classic, the debate featuring Professors William Moomaw, CIERP Director, and Bruce Everett, Adjunct Associate Professor of International Business. The two “international energy heavyweights” discuss the year's most salient energy-related issues and debate topics ranging from renewable energy to the role of government in setting the course for technology development and the economics of climate change mitigation.
This year, they started the debate early. In the Fall 2012 edition of Issues in Science and Technology, Professor Everett published an article titled "Back to Basics on Energy Policy," in which he argues that cost and the market should decide what our energy supply mix should be, and the government should "refocus its efforts on what it has traditionally done best: supporting conceptual and technical research." Professor Moomaw issued a response to his article, published in the Winter 2013 issue, asserting that there is little evidence that the market will sufficiently take into account our national security and environmental interests.
Moomaw and Everett will continue the discussion at this year's debate on Thursday, February 28, from 6:30-8:00 PM in Fletcher's ASEAN Auditorium.
Read Professor Everett's article here.
Read Professor Moomaw's response here (scroll to the second response).
Read a summary of last year's debate here.
February 14, 2013
Extreme weather in a changing climate
What’s up with the weather? New England has seen its share of extremes as of late, from the recent winter storm known as Nemo to Hurricane Sandy last fall. The climate is changing. That’s a fact. Figuring out how it is changing, why it is changing and what the consequences of that change will be requires a knack for science, a penchant for cross-disciplinary thinking, and the ability to explain complex subjects to a broad audience.
Enter Andrew Freedman, F10, senior science writer for Climate Central, an online publication dedicated to researching and reporting the fact of the changing climate and its effect on the United States. All weather is suspicious now, he told students and faculty at a February 14 presentation hosted by the CIERP at The Fletcher School of Law. And all weather is occurring in a changed climate.
Melding his Fletcher degree with a master’s degree in science from Columbia, Freedman is “a new breed at the intersection of climate science and journalism,” said William Moomaw, professor of international environmental and director of the CIERP. Extreme events such as record heat waves in Texas, record winter temperatures in the Northeast, and record high or low water in the Mississippi are described by experts as representative of “The New Abnormal,” Freedman said.
Read the complete event summary...
February 6, 2013
CIERP Fellow co-authors chapter in Poverty Reduction in a Changing Climate
Rishikesh Ram Bhandary, CIERP Junior Research Fellow and a doctoral candidate at The Fletcher School, has co-authored a chapter (with Bryan Bushley) in Hari Bansha Dulal's new edited volume, Poverty Reduction in a Changing Climate. The book explores the nexus between development and climate change – how climate change will impact development outcomes, as well as how efforts to address climate change can have developmental outcomes. Bhandary and Bushley's chapter focuses on the role of carbon market instruments for forestry, in particular reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) and the impact on poverty reduction. The fundamental question they examine is how the design of carbon offsets can enhance development outcomes like poverty reduction.
Visit the publisher's website here.
February 3, 2013
Can livestock bring back biodiversity?
The solution to a major challenge sometimes requires a paradigm-shifting discovery that dares to redefine and reshape conventional approaches. The endeavor to tackle desertification, maintain biodiversity, and improve grass cover is one such case in point where a counter intuitive practice called Holistic Management – using livestock to actually restore depleted grasslands – has been surprisingly effective.
Allan Savory, a rancher and restoration ecologist, the founder of the Savory Institute, and the originator of Holistic Management, shared his remarkable journey during a talk on January 25 at The Fletcher School titled Reversing Global Warming while Meeting Human Needs: An Urgently Needed Land-Based Option. Through his approach to reversing desertification, Savory has transformed large tracts of degraded land in Africa and four other continents.
The conventional view is that overgrazing by livestock is destructive to plants and soils and that removing them from the land heals desertification. In the early days, Savory himself was also skeptical of the usefulness of livestock and in his own words “condemned and hated” them. “I thought if we could get rid of livestock and learn to manage the wild population, we could solve the problem. I was wrong,” Savory told the audience.
Read the complete event summary here or watch Savory's full presentation below.
January 30, 2013
Tufts Now highlights link between "climate and calamity"
"Big changes in global weather mean rethinking how we respond to natural disasters—and we better think quickly." A new article in Tufts Now draws on interviews with CIERP Director William Moomaw, Peter Walker, director of Tufts' Feinstein International Center, and John Hammock, associate professor of public policy at Fletcher, to explore the links between climate change, natural disasters, and humanitarian crises, and emphasize the urgent need to anticipate and adapt to these changing conditions.
"Governments need to anticipate dangerous weather patterns and become more agile in responding when storms strike. Outside humanitarian organizations need to change the way they approach such crises—the standard tactic of parachuting in and taking charge just won’t work."
Access the complete article here.
January 28, 2013
Can the international treaty system address climate change?
While individual weather events may not be attributable to global warming, the prevailing climate does define weather patterns. Today’s climate is measurably warmer than that of fifty or one hundred years ago, causing a variety of changes that are consistent with the projected results of climate change and provide us with a preview of what might happen if global temperatures continue to rise. In his new article in the Fletcher Forum of World Affairs' Winter 2013 issue, CIERP Director William Moomaw argues that a reconfigured international approach is essential to achieving a global solution to climate change, but that it must be led by actions of both the G2: the United States and China.
Read the article here.
Access the complete Winter 2013 issue of the Fletcher Forum here.
January 23, 2013
Professor Moomaw addresses the climate change governance challenge
WBUR's online opinion and ideas page, Cognoscenti, has featured CIERP Director William Moomaw in its series on "Climate Change. Challenges. Solutions." Professor Moomaw underscores "The Governance Challenge," lamenting the common misconception that reducing greenhouse gas emissions negatively impacts economic growth and advocating for an alternative strategy that re-frames the overall approach to addressing climate change so that it reflects the development needs of all countries and links climate protection goals to the development structure of the treaty. He argues that the current deadlock over emissions reductions could be overcome by directing international cooperation towards providing clean energy services for development. The feature also includes perspectives from Sonia Hamel, an adviser to governments and foundations on energy, transportation, and climate change policy.
Access the WBUR feature here.
Read Professor Moomaw's related discussion paper here: "Creating a Mutual Gains Climate Regime through Universal Clean Energy Services."
January 16, 2013
Why do governments support renewable energy?
In her new article in Daedalus, the Journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher explores the motivations behind government policy on renewable energy and identifies factors that lead some countries to be much more supportive of renewables than others. This issue of Daedalus is the second volume of a two-issue focus on the alternative energy future in the United States from the point of view of social scientists.
Professor Gallagher is director of CIERP's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program.
Access the article here.
January 7, 2013
Professor Gallagher discusses energy security at Fletcher's 10th Annual London Symposium
On December 8, The Fletcher School held its 10th Annual London Symposium on the topic of “The Global Energy Security Landscape." The event included presentations by CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher (F00, F03), director of the Center's Energy, Climate and Innovation Research Program, and Anita Orban (F01, F07), Hungary’s ambassador-at-large for energy security.
Participants included alumni working in leadership positions in the private, non-profit and public sectors; members of Fletcher’s European Advisory Group; and members of Tufts’ International Board of Advisors. Tufts University Provost David Harris provided the introductions.
Read the complete event coverage here and watch Professor Gallagher's presentation below.
December 19, 2012
Professor Gallagher explores barriers to electric vehicle deployment
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, has been appointed to the National Research Council Committee on Overcoming Barriers to Electric Vehicle Deployment. The ad hoc committee will conduct a study identifying the market barriers slowing the purchase of electric vehicles and hindering the deployment of supporting infrastructure in the United States. The committee concluded their second meeting today, which focused on charging infrastructure needs, barriers, and deployment.
Read more about the committee's membership and mandate here.
December 14, 2012
The role of science in environmental compliance: the Ramsar Convention in Central Asia
Lesley Pories, Fletcher MALD candidate (2013), attended in November “The Conference on Wetlands and the Ramsar Convention in Central Asia: Celebrating the 10th year of the Kyrgyz Republic after joining the Ramsar Convention,” which was held in Bishkek, the capital of the Kyrgyz Republic. The conference was followed by a three-day “Regional Technical Meeting on the Implementation of the Ramsar Convention in the Central Asia Region.” The conference sought to highlight and address a wide variety of issues at stake, from governmental policy to local problems with implementation. Lesley's trip was funded by CIERP, with additional funding from MIT.
Follow the link below to read more about Lesley and her assessment of the role of science in the implementation and enforcement of environmental agreements, following on her experiences in Central Asia.
November 30, 2012
CIERP Professors of Practice blog from COP18
CIERP Professors of Practice Patrick Verkooijen, World Bank Special Representative for Climate Change, and Rachel Kyte, Vice President of Sustainable Development at the World Bank, share their thoughts on the 2012 UN Conference on Climate Change (COP18), which began November 26 in Doha and will continue through this week. Links to their posts are below.
Patrick Verkooijen, turning down the heat: "How would life be in a 4°C warmer world?"
Read a related World Bank Report, "Turn Down the Heat: Why a 4°C Warmer World Must be Avoided" here and follow more World Bank expert posts from Doha here.
Rachel Kyte, on the lack of action: "A Wake Up Call."
Follow her posts here.
October 30, 2012
Professor Gallagher finds end-use technologies marginalized in energy innovation
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, has co-authored a new article in Nature Climate Change that finds that efficient end-use technologies contribute large potential emission reductions and provide higher social returns on investment than energy-supply technologies. Yet, public institutions, policies, and financial resources pervasively privilege energy-supply technologies. The article, titled “Marginalization of end-use technologies in energy innovation for climate protection,” was co-authored with Charlie Wilson, Arnulf Grubler, and Greg Nemet.
Access the article here.
October 23, 2012
Ned Spang wins Global Water Forum's Emerging Scholar Award for his Fletcher doctoral research
Recent Fletcher Ph.D. graduate and former CIERP Research Fellow Edward Spang won first prize in the Global Water Forum's Emerging Scholar Award competition for a summary of his Fletcher dissertation, "A thirst for power: A global analysis of water consumption for energy production." Ned is currently Program Manager for the Center for Water-Energy Efficiency (CWEE) at UC Davis.
Access his paper here.
October 22, 2012
Public Perception Key to Wind Energy Project Success
The development of new sources of renewable energy is crucial in achieving energy security, and wind energy is certainly one of them as wind turbines installed at various locations across the country are gradually increasing their contribution to electricity generation. As these projects develop, it is imperative to take local communities into consideration before starting new initiatives, as their support is an integral component of successful projects.
Maria Petrova, a postdoctoral research fellow at CIERP, recently completed research on measuring the perceptions among local communities about wind energy projects. In her presentation entitled Public Perceptions of Wind Energy Projects in Massachusetts, Petrova shared results demonstrating that communities tend to support such projects provided their benefits are explained to residents in a timely and coherent manner.
Read the complete event summary...
October 3, 2012
Professor Gallagher presents on the global diffusion of cleaner energy technologies
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, recently gave a presentation on the global diffusion of cleaner energy technologies at the University of Texas at Austin's Energy Institute. Her presentation offers a preview of her new book on the topic, forthcoming from The MIT Press in 2013. The book identifies the conditions necessary for motivating the international diffusion of cleaner energy technologies, and empirically investigates the extent to which certain barriers and incentives to their movement across international borders are valid in the Chinese context.
Watch a video of her presentation here.
September 27, 2012
Fletcher Professor of Practice Verkooijen calls to step up climate action during Climate Vulnerability Forum
Fletcher Professor of Practice and World Bank Special Representative for Climate Change Patrick Verkooijen, jointly with Foreign Minister of Bangladesh Dipu Moni, assessed the findings of the just-released 2012 Climate Vulnerability Monitor during a High Level event in New York in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly and Climate Week. The Climate Vulnerability Monitor 2nd Edition reveals that climate change has already held back global development, and inaction is a leading global cause of death. Harm is most acute for poor and vulnerable groups, but no country is spared either the costs of inaction or the lost benefits of an alternative path. Commissioned by the world’s most vulnerable countries and backed by high-level and technical panels, the new Monitor estimates human and economic impacts of climate change and the carbon economy for 184 countries in 2010 and 2030, across 34 indicators.
During the High Level panel Professor Verkooijen noted that "we need to act now as cheap mitigation options disappear as economies become locked into high-carbon infrastructure planning. The world – and the poor in particular – simply cannot afford to lose the climate battle in the decade ahead." Professor Verkooijen highlighted that we have limited time to put in motion an action regime that places all countries on climate resilient growth paths, providing jobs, competitiveness and livelihoods for all.
View a video of the panel discussion here.
September 24, 2012
Is Sustainability a Myth?
In an age of depleting energy reserves, growing resource shortages, and mounting environmental challenges, the promise of sustainable development and renewable energy indeed brings hope and reassurance. But the question remains: are we expecting too much from sustainable means of growth?
During a talk at The Fletcher School on September 24 hosted by CIERP's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Research Seminar Series, the US Ambassador to Finland, Bruce J. Oreck, laid bare the astounding gap between energy demand and supply, and spoke of the potential consequences that might result from this disparity.
Read the complete event summary...
September 11, 2012
Professor Moomaw talks about resettlement in China on China Radio International
China Radio International's daily radio show "Today," broadcast in hour-long segments, interviewed CIERP Director William Moomaw, along with Yao Yongling, Professor at the Institute of Regional and Urban Economics in the School of Public Administration at Renmin University of China, and Mike Bastin, Researcher at Nottingham University's School of Contemporary Chinese Studies, on the impacts of forced resettlement in China. As framed by CRI:
"China has resettled 1.7 million people for the construction of the Three Gorges Dam, a huge human project probably unprecedented in history. But that's not the end of the story. The threat of landslides along the dam's banks will force tens of thousands to move again in the same area! Resettlement of residents out of the disaster-prone areas has almost become a standard practice for Chinese governments. Following the July 21 downpour in Beijing, the city government also plans to move 74,000 residents in mountainous areas in rural Beijing."
Listen to the program here.
September 10, 2012
Maliheh Birjandi Feriz honored by WRI for summer research
In a competition among all summer interns at the World Resources Institute, Maliheh Birjandi Feriz, a Fletcher MALD candidate and CIERP research assistant, was awarded the Prize for Best Research Content for her work on allocation mechanisms of the Green Climate Fund (GCF). Working with the International Financial Flows and Environment (IFEE) team, she studied various options for resource allocation used in existing multilateral, bilateral, and national funds, and researched possible guiding principles for an equitable allocation of resources in the context of the Green Climate Fund. Her research will be published in the coming months.
For more information on her work, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
August 30, 2012
CIERP welcomes two new Professors of Practice
Rachel Kyte, Vice President of Sustainable Development at the World Bank, and Andrew Steer, President of the World Resources Institute, have been named Professors of Practice at CIERP. Their engagement strengthens the Center's Sustainable Development Diplomacy and Governance program, offering faculty and students the opportunity to engage with top leaders in the field. Kyte and Steer join current CIERP Professors of Practice Hans Hoogeveen, Director General of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation, and Patrick Verkooijen, Special Representative for Climate Change at the World Bank. Professors of Practice spend time on campus participating in courses, seminars, and special events, as well as advising students.
Read more about Kyte and Steer here...
August 15, 2012
What makes U.S. energy consumers tick?
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, explores this question in a new article by the same name published in the Summer issue of Issues in Science and Technology. Written together with John Randell of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, where Professor Gallagher was a Visiting Scholar in the spring, the piece emphasizes the social dimensions of energy innovation, especially the question of what makes consumers adopt more efficient energy technologies, and argues for increased attention to the social sciences in energy policy. The article is part of a special section of the magazine on the social and behavioral dimensions of environmental policy.
Access the article here.
Read a response to the article by Cora Marrett, Deputy Director, National Science Foundation (scroll to the bottom section).
July 31, 2012
Professor Gallagher explores the concept of an energy technology innovation system
CIERP Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of the Center's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, recently co-authored an article titled "The Energy Technology Innovation System" in the Annual Review of Environment and Resources. Her co-authors include CIERP Junior Research Fellow and Ph.D. student Laura Kuhl, as well as Arnulf Grubler of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Gregory Nemet of the Follette School of Public Affairs at the University of Wisconsin, and Charlie Wilson of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research. The article derives from a chapter Professor Gallagher, her co-authors, and others wrote on innovation in the Global Energy Assessment, which will be released in fall 2012.
Access the article here.
July 30, 2012
CIERP Professor of Practice appointed World Bank Special Representative for Climate Change
The World Bank has announced that Patrick Verkooijen, Non-Resident Professor of Practice of Sustainable Development Diplomacy at CIERP, has been appointed as its Special Representative for Climate Change. Verkooijen will leave his current post as Head of Agriculture and Climate Change at the World Bank for the new position and as such serves as principal advisor to the Vice President of Sustainable Development, specifically in engaging with the UN and other partners leading global efforts in the climate change area. Verkooijen brings his experience as an international negotiator and coordinator in international sustainable development and climate change activities to his new post.
Verkooijen's Professorship at CIERP focuses on his co-lecturing of the sustainable development diplomacy (SDD) course, in close collaboration with CIERP Director William Moomaw and Professor of Practice Hans Hoogeveen. Verkooijen is a former student of Professor Moomaw, and they have worked together on international sustainability issues over the past decade.
Read more about Verkooijen here.
July 29, 2012
Professor Moomaw speaks about reframing environmental negotiations on Maria Armoudian's "Insighters and Scholars' Circle" radio program
CIERP Director William Moomaw participated in a virtual roundtable discussion on climate change and how low carbon technologies might address it. The program was broadcast live on several stations in California and the Midwest (the archived version is linked below). Other participants included Professor Mark Jacobson of Stanford University, whose expertise is on the technical aspects of meeting energy needs with renewables, and Ravi Rajan, who spoke about the adverse implications of climate change on developing countries and how they too could benefit from renewable energy. Professor Moomaw spoke about the shortfalls of current treaty negotiations, emphasizing that what we really need is a development agreement that will deliver clean energy services to all rather than a pollution control treaty to limit emissions. He also outlined the notion of how it will be multiple actors at different scales implementing strategies that will solve the problem, and not a top down treaty.
Listen to the program here.
Read Professor Moomaw's recent paper on the topic: "Creating a Mutual Gains Climate Regime through Universal Clean Energy Services."
July 15, 2012
Reflecting on Rio+20
At the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, world leaders, along with thousands of participants from governments, the private sector, NGOs, and other groups, came together to discuss how to reduce poverty, advance social equity, and ensure environmental protection. Members of the CIERP, Fletcher, and broader Tufts community were there, including Fletcher Ph.D. Candidates Laura Kuhl and Andrew Tirrell. Kuhl, a CIERP Research Fellow, also participated in a side event co-sponsored by CIERP and Tufts Institute of the Environment, which explored how to reframe environmental negotiations from a pollution prevention framework to opportunities for sustainable development. The event was moderated by Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher, Director of CIERP's Energy, Climate, and Innovation Program, and featured additional speakers from the Stockholm Environment Institute, WHO European Centre for Environment and Health, United Nations Foundation, World Resources Institute, and Tufts School of Engineering.
Kuhl and Tirrell offer their reflections on Rio+20 here.
July 2, 2012
Fletcher alumnus co-authors report on ICT, cities, and climate change in Africa
Gaurav Relhan, a Fletcher alumnus (MALD 2010) who works with the World Bank as a development specialist for the Africa region, recently co-authored a report related to Information & Communication Technologies (ICT), cities, and climate change in Africa. The work has launched a global policy dialogue for inculcating greater ICT-based citizen participation towards helping cities in Africa adapt to climate change, and also led to the development of the ICT tool called 'Taarifa' which can enable citizens to engage with their governments in this regard. The report and accompanying video are featured on the World Bank's external website.
Access the report here.
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