Climate Change 2018

New frontiers in innovation, finance and climate science

15 October 2018 - 9:30am to 16 October 2018 - 1:30pm
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Chatham House, London




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From start-ups to major corporates, companies are developing strategies in response to disruptive changes that have been brought by climate change and the low-carbon transition. At the same time, new technologies and big data will make it possible to reconfigure future activities and patterns of demand and consumption. The 2018 Chatham House Climate Change conference will ask how these new business models and technological frontiers can drive sustainability and decarbonization as well as provide practical solutions to mitigating and managing climate change. 

Following the publication in early October of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C, this conference will also offer an early opportunity to discuss the implications of its findings with policymakers, climate scientists, NGOs, and business and political leaders.

The 22nd annual Chatham House Climate Change conference will address: 

  • New frontiers of innovation in sectors with high emissions and reduction potential (agriculture, construction, transport, shipping, etc.)
  • How to incorporate climate considerations into the regulation, supervision and oversight of financial markets and institutions;
  • Developments in extreme event attribution science and the implications for climate litigation
  • The conclusions of the IPCC special report and implications for mitigation efforts, adaptation and the international negotiations
  • Prospects for COP24 and delivering on climate ambitions by 2020

The Chatham House Rule 
To enable as open a debate as possible, this conference will be held under the Chatham House Rule.


Monday 15 October

Session One | Climate and New Frontiers of Innovation

In 2015, the Paris climate agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals both highlighted the urgent need for transformative approaches to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and resource use. This session will explore the new frontiers of innovation being developed in sectors with high emissions and reduction potential and ask how they are contributing to driving sustainability and decarbonization. 

  • What new technologies and business models are being developed to reduce emissions and improve sustainability in the road sector? How are regulatory systems at city and national level influencing this?
  • How can the aviation industry find solutions to reduce emissions, and improve aircraft design and use of innovative materials? 
  • How is the shipping industry developing its own new technologies and processes to limit sulphur emissions? 
  • How are new technologies changing the ways in which the built environment is used and maintained? What role are engineering and construction companies playing? What opportunities for emissions reduction can be found in the convergence of digital, physical and natural environments? 
  • Which new innovations and technological improvements are having the greatest effect on sustainability and emissions in agriculture and food production? 

Session Two | The Role of Financial Markets and Institutions 

This panel will look at the initiatives under way to incorporate climate considerations into the regulation, supervision and oversight of financial markets and institutions. It will explore initiatives across banking, insurance, institutional investment and capital markets. 

  • Which policies and regulatory innovations can best support the development of green finance? 
  • How can commitments from institutional investors be turned into strategies and put into practice? How are institutional investors creating new expectations and behaviours in high emitting sectors? 
  • Will climate-related financial risk disclosures be adopted in emerging economies, where most green investment will need to take place?
  • How can the gap be bridged between policymakers and finance practitioners investing in green finance?

Session Three | Extreme Weather, Risk and Adaptation  

In 2017, the frequency of extreme weather events brought the effects of climate change into sharp focus. Developments in the science of extreme event attribution are now making this a rapidly expanding area of climate science, allowing a greater understanding of impacts. Even in the most ambitious emissions reductions scenarios, climate impacts will become more extreme and more dangerous. This session will focus on the risks and challenges of adaptation. 

  • What potential is there for extreme weather event attribution to be used in litigation against polluters and in transnational climate cases? 
  • How is the insurance industry changing in response to increased climate risks?
  • How can more climate- resilient markets and supply chains be developed?
  • How can cities and infrastructure be future-proofed against climate impacts? 
  • In what ways will agriculture need to adapt? What are the challenges around land use?

Tuesday 16 October

Session Four | A New Chapter in Climate Science? 

Following the publication in early October of the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C, this panel will discuss the implications of its findings and the path ahead for mitigation efforts, adaptation and the international negotiations.

  • How have the report’s findings helped build a greater understanding of climate impacts?
  • What might it take now to limit temperature rises? 
  • As countries update and review their national climate plans for 2020, what practical challenges need to be overcome to reach the goals of the Paris Agreement? 

Session Five | Road to COP24 – Delivering on Ambition  

The UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP24) meeting in Katowice could well be the most important COP since Paris. Despite announcing bold climate ambitions, political realities in some countries continue to stifle progress. Vital discussions around the 2018 stocktake and facilitative dialogue will need to be concluded in Poland. This session will address recent developments and look at what outcomes can be expected from the COP24 in Katowice. 

  • How have political changes over the past year led to new leadership, alliances and fault lines in global climate change action?
  • What meaningful progress has taken place in the intersessional meetings in the run- up to this year’s COP? 
  • What role will China, other developing countries and small island states play at the talks? 
  • What difference to climate politics has progress in decarbonizing the real economy made? What role will innovations and new technologies play in discussions about solutions at COP24?

© The Royal Institute of International Affairs 2018

Register by Friday 31 August 2018 to benefit from the early booking rate.

Ways to book:

  1. Phone: Call Georgia Dalton on +44 (0)20 7314 2785
  2. Online: Click here to complete the online registration form

Check if your organization is a member of Chatham House here.



Partners and major corporate members  
All organizations£545£645
Standard corporate member  
Commercial organizations£1,190£1,390
Government departments£720£820
NGOs and academics£440£540
Commercial organizations£1,335£1,535
Government departments£810£920
NGOs and academics£490£595

Your delegate pass includes:

  • Conference attendance
  • Documentation
  • Lunch and refreshments

Travel and accommodation are not included.

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for this event, please contact Adam Bowie on +44 (0) 20 7957 5732

If you are interested in partnering on this event, please contact Ayesha Arif on +44 (0)20 7957 5753

Chatham House
10 St James's Square
[email protected]

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7957 5643
Fax: +44 (0)20 7957 5710

If you wish to book the venue for your own event please phone +44 (0)20 7314 2764

The nearest tube station is Piccadilly Circus which is on the Piccadilly and the Bakerloo Underground lines. From Piccadilly follow Regent Street southwards towards Pall Mall and take the first road on the right called Jermyn Street. Duke of York Street is the second road on the left and leads to St James's Square. Chatham House is immediately on your right.


Although we cannot book accommodation for delegates, we have arranged a reduced rate at some nearby hotels, where you can book your own accommodation. Please inform the hotel that you will be attending a conference at Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs) to qualify for the Institute's reduced rate.

Please note all rates are subject to availability.

Flemings Mayfair
13 Half Moon Street
London - W1J 7BH

Tel: + 44 (0)20 7499 2964
Fax: + 44 (0)20 7499 1817
[email protected]

Classic Double without breakfast: £195 +VAT

The Cavendish London
81 Jermyn Street
London - SW1U 6JF

Tel: + 44 (0)20 7930 2111
Fax: + 44 (0)20 7839 2125
[email protected] 

Classic Room without breakfast: £205 +VAT

Book The Cavendish online

The Stafford London 
St James's Place
London - SW1A 1NJ

Tel: 020 7493 0111
Fax: 020 7493 7121
[email protected]

Classic Queen without breakfast: £247 +VAT
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This conference will be held under the Chatham House Rule. Information for journalists.

Press can request a press pass.

For enquiries relating to the conference agenda or sponsorship please call Adam Bowie on +44 (0) 20 7957 5732

For registration enquiries please call Georgia Dalton on +44 (0)20 7314 2785

For general enquiries please email [email protected] 

The Chatham House Rule

To enable as open a debate as possible, this event will be held under the Chatham House Rule.