Chatham House: Independent thinking on international affairs

Climate Change 2012

Security, resilience and diplomacy
15-16 October 2012

Day One, Monday 15 October

Climate Risk: The Science

  • What are the current climate impacts and which regions are most affected?
  • What are current long term climate forecasts? What temperature rise is the world realistically on track for?
  • What will be the impact of a 2˚ degree increase in temperatures on sea levels, weather patterns, and frequency and severity of high impact weather events? On food and water security?
  • What would be the impact on these of a 4˚ increase in temperature?

09.30     Chair
Bernice Lee OBE
Research Director, Energy, Environment and Resources
Chatham House

Professor Thomas Stocker
Co-Chair WGI
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
Questions & discussion

10.00    Keynote Speaker (on the record)
Connie Hedegaard
European Commissioner for Climate Action
European Commission

Questions & discussion

Session One
Security and Climate Change

  • What will be the greatest national and international challenges arising from climate change?
  • Examining the key issues about extreme events, disasters and climate change outlined in the IPCC Special Report for Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX)
  • What the UK is doing on the Climate Change Risk Assessment
  • To what extent do health, social, economic and critical infrastructural assets need to be adapted to respond to these emerging threats? 
  • How should countries be preparing for the increased potential for climate related conflict?

Chair  Cleo Paskal
Associate Fellow
Chatham House

10.30 Speakers
Cleo Paskal

Dan Smith OBE
Secretary General
International Alert

Prof Virginia Murray
Head of Extreme Events
Health Protection Agency, UK

Questions and discussion

11.50 - 12.20     Refreshments

Session Two
International Climate Change Policy

  • What progress has there been on key points in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process after the 2011 Durban meeting and before Doha in 2012?
  • What new alignments have emerged from the international climate talks?
  • What are the proposed approaches for enhancing mitigation ambition?
  • What are the key outcomes from the first session of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action?
  • How effective is carbon trading as a tool for reducing global carbon emissions?

Chair  Bernice Lee OBE
Research Director, Energy, Environment and Resources
Chatham House

12.20    Keynote Speaker (on the record)
Christiana Figueres
Executive Secretary

Questions & discussion

12.50    Keynote Discussion (on the record)
The Honourable Peter Kent
Minister of the Environment
Graham van’t Hoff
Chairman Shell UK
Executive Vice President, CO2 and Alternative Energies

Dieter Helm CBE
Professor of Energy Policy
University of Oxford

13.30     Lunch

14.30    Keynote Speaker (on the record)
Rt Hon Edward Davey
Secretary of State
Department of Energy and Climate Change, UK

Questions & discussion

Session Three
Technology, Public Attitudes, Energy and Climate Change

Energy production and use is responsible for the largest share of the increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Consequently, energy remains the main focus of public policy and media attention on climate change, but despite this significant parts of the public are confused as to the impacts of different technologies and their own roles and responsibilities.

  • What are the different CO2 mitigation technologies and strategies being considered nationally and internationally? How viable are different approaches and what are the funding models?
  • To what extent will public attitudes towards different CO2 mitigation strategies drive energy policy?
  • How does the media influence public attitudes and behavior?

Chair  Richard Gledhill
Partner, Global Leader Climate Change

15.00    Speakers
Ambassador Richard H. Jones
Deputy Executive Director
International Energy Agency

Antony Froggatt
Senior Research Fellow, Energy, Environment and Resource Governance
Chatham House

Professor Michael Grubb
Senior Research Associate, Faculty of Economics
University of Cambridge

Questions and discussion

15.50-16.20 Refreshments

Session Four
A Radical Solution
Could geoengineering be a useful tool for moderating climate change?

  • How viable is geo engineering as a strategy for controlling climate? What are the scientific concerns around manipulation of the world’s ecosystem?
  • What are the key policy responses towards geo-engineering techniques for manipulating the climate?
  • How realistic are fears that geoengineering could be weaponized and how could this issue be tackled?
  • Will geoengineering be used as a justification of continuation of business as usual?

Panel Discussion

Oliver Morton
Briefings Editor
The Economist

16.20   Panelists
Dr Jack Stilgoe
Senior Lecturer, Department of Science and Technology Studies
University College London

Dr Steve Rayner
Institute for Science, Innovation and Society

Dr David Santillo
Chief Scientist

17.20    End of day one and drinks reception hosted by Chatham House


Tuesday 16 October

Session Five
National Action on Climate and Security Implications

This session will examine the extent to which extent political and business leaders are focusing on climate related security issues at national level.

  • What actions do cities and countries need to take to ensure that critical infrastructure including transport, energy, water and IT remain protected from the threats associated with rising sea levels and flooding?
  • How should health services strengthen capabilities to assess, plan for and respond to current and projected climate related threats?
  • What further resilience measures do countries need to invest in? How should governments balance the costs of resilience with the costs of response, and who should pay?
  • How can the private sector be engaged in improving national resilience and developing adaptation strategies?

09.30    Chair
Cleo Paskal
Associate Fellow
Chatham House


Prof Zhang Haibin
School of International Studies
Peking University

Prof Debarati Guha-Sapir
WHO Collaborating Centre for Research on Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED) 

Dr David N Bresch
Head of Sustainability
Swiss Reinsurance Company Ltd

Questions and discussion

10.45-11.15    Refreshments

Session Six
Adapting to a Changing World
Strategic responses to climate change at international level

This session will assess the requirements and challenges of coordinating international responses to climate threats. What adaptive strategies are being explored and how will they be financed?

  • How can governments and business minimize global disruption from ‘black swan’ climate events?
  • What effective regional initiatives for regional and global resilience and security are in place?
  • How much investment in adaptation is needed, and where will funding come from?
  • What is the role of the private sector in funding adaptation activities?
  • What is the role for international climate and resource policy and diplomacy?

11.15   Chair
Nick Mabey
Chief Executive

Panel Discussion
Bernice Lee
Research Director, Energy, Environment and Resources Governance
Chatham House

Shahidul Haque
Former Director, International Cooperation and Partnership
International Organization for Migration (IOM)

Viktor Elbling
Director General for Economic Affairs and Sustainable Development
German Federal Foreign Office

Richard Myungi
Vice President's Office, Division of Environment, Tanzania
and first Chairman and LDC Board Member, Global Climate Change Adaptation Fund

Dr. Jamie Shea
Deputy Assistant Secretary General, Emerging Security Challenges Division


Questions and discussion

13.00    Lunch and end of conference

© The Royal Institute of International Affairs, 2012