"Don’t wait for the (climate) negotiations to save the world" ! These words from Brice Lalonde , Special Advisor on Sustainable Development to the UN Global Compact, were enthusiastically applauded on October 9, when MIT, the Embassy of France in the United States and the Consulate General of France in Boston hosted the French Ameri-Can Climate Talks (FACTS) at Wong Auditorium at MIT. FACTS is intended to mobilize French, American and Canadian public opinion on issues related to climate change and discuss its economic impacts. A panel of six sience and policy experts, Chappell Lawson, Susan Solomon, Jean Jouzel, Kerry Emanuel, Emilie Alberoa, Brice Lalonde, kicked off the event by outlining the main consequences of climate change and the risks it presents to the economy, particularly in the North East region.

An auditorium full of excited individuals eager to hear the panel’s opinions on the global issue of climate change, welcomed the panel with keenness. With welcoming remarks by Chappell Lawson, Associate Professor of Political Science at MIT and Director of the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives, the panel highlighted the economic opportunities of addressing climate change now and working to lessen its effects. Additionally, the event connected these issues to the on-going negotiations for a new climate treaty to be discussed in Paris, during the COP 21, in December 2015 and explained what can expected from this major international conference.

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Here are some notable quotes to remember:

Kerry Emanuel: "10 000 premature deaths/ Year in the US because of Coal " ; “To fight ‪climate change we need the passionate response of citizens”
John Reilly: "What about taking climate change as one of the great challenges of this generation?"
Brice Lalonde: "We need to find the spirit to reach to build a better future" ;"We need a global leader & global politics for a better environment"; “Global leadership is needed on climate change issues.”

The Panel Conference was followed by a Q&A session moderated by Tom Zeller Jr, the senior editor of Yale Environment 360 and 2014 Knight Science Journalism fellow at MIT, former staff writer and editor for They New York Times, National Geographic and The Huffington Post. Atendees were allowed to write up questions and ask them to the panelists. A cocktail reception followed where participants were able to have one-on-one discussion with the panelists.

In November, FACTS will be in New Orleans, LA on the 10th; in Vancouver, Canada on the 12th; and in Los Angeles, CA on the 14th, 2014.

More about the panelists:

Susan Solomon is a professor of atmospheric chemistry and climate science at MIT, a member of the US National Academy of Sciences, the European Academy and the French Academy of Sciences. She kicked off the conference with her lesson on time scales of climate change and societal change.
Jean Jouzel, a climatologist, glaciologist and researcher at the Atomic Energy Commission in Paris, followed with what he believes science tells us about the changes of our climate.
Kerry Emanuel, a professor of Meterology at MIT and member of the US National Academy of Sciences stressed the link between climate change and extreme weather events.
Emilie Alberoa, associate professor of Economics at HEC Paris and head of Carbon Market and Energy research division at CDC Climate in Paris shared her thoughts on curbing CO2 emissions thanks to economic tools.
John Reilly, Senior Lecturer at MIT and Co-Director of the Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change Center for environmental Policy Research in Boston shared his insights on how understanding the role of human actives as a contributor to global environmental change and the effects of environmental change on the economy.
Brice Lalonde, a Special Advisor on Sustainable Development to the UN Global Compact, former French minister for the Environment (1988-1992) and Executive Coordinator for the Rio+20 Conference gave a lively talk on the growing role of business in the international mobilization against Climate Change.

More about FACTS :

Follow FACTS on Twitter: #FrenchAmeriCanClimateTalks

Next FACTS :

- November 10, 2014 - New Orleans, LA, United States
How can we best prepare for climate change consequences?

- November 12, 2014 - Vancouver, BC, Canada
Climate Change and Solutions from Innovation

- November 14, 2014 - Los Angeles, CA, United States
Climate Ready Cities: Taking Action to Mitigate Climate Change and Adapt in Urban Areas

Last modified on 27/10/2014

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