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U.N. Climate Summit: What Action Will The World Take On Climate Change?46:49
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A protester shows a placard during a climate demonstration Friday, Sept. 20, 2019 in Paris. In Canberra and Kabul, Cape Town and Berlin, and across the globe, hundreds of thousands of people took the streets Friday to demand that leaders tackle climate change in the run-up to a U.N. summit. (Francois Mori/AP)
A protester shows a placard during a climate demonstration Friday, Sept. 20, 2019 in Paris. In Canberra and Kabul, Cape Town and Berlin, and across the globe, hundreds of thousands of people took the streets Friday to demand that leaders tackle climate change in the run-up to a U.N. summit. (Francois Mori/AP)

With David Folkenflik

The U.N. Climate Summit convenes in the U.S. We’re in New York to measure the world’s resolve to halt climate change.

Guests

Rebeca Sabnam, 16-year-old high school junior at Brooklyn Latin School who spoke at the Climate Strike in NYC Friday, along with Greta Thunberg and other youth activists.

Julio Friedmann, senior research scholar at the Center for Global Energy Policy at Columbia University. He is one of the most widely known and authoritative experts in the U.S. on carbon removal; CO2 conversion and use; and carbon capture and sequestration. Served in the Obama Administration as principal deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Fossil Energy at the Department of Energy. Former senior research scientist at ExxonMobil. (@CarbonWrangler)

Susanne Moser, director of Susanne Moser Research and Consulting, where she conducts original research on a range of social science aspects of climate and global environmental change and provides trainings in communicating climate change. She's an affiliated faculty at Antioch University New England, and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning.

From The Reading List

Los Angeles Times: "Q&A: What is the U.N. climate change summit?" — "Enough with the platitudes — it’s time for world leaders to take concrete actions to avert a catastrophic heating of the planet.

"That’s the message United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has delivered to the heads of state gathering in New York for a summit aimed at galvanizing action to slow global warming. Officials from dozens of countries are expected to take to the stage and reveal plans to step up their efforts during the day-long meeting on Monday, which will be accompanied by a variety of climate-related events.

"Here’s a look at what the summit is all about.

"Why is this summit happening?

"The Climate Action Summit is an attempt to kick-start the global campaign against climate change.

"It comes at a critical juncture following the 2015 Paris climate accord, an unprecedented international agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Participating countries are supposed to continually ratchet down their emissions, and their first plans for doing so must be ironed out next year.

"But most nations are moving far too slowly, and summit organizers hope they can get them back on track. To provide inspiration, a succession of world leaders will take the stage and announce concrete steps they will take to avoid disastrous levels of warming. How far those plans go will be an important signal of what to expect in the coming years."

Washington Post: "Climate change protests: Millions around the world strike for climate action" — "Young people from more than 150 countries are skipping school in solidarity on Friday as part of another series of global climate protests urging world leaders to act and protect humanity from climate change.

"Friday’s strikes come three days before world leaders are set to gather at the United Nations on Monday for a much-anticipated climate summit. U.N. Secretary General António Guterres has insisted that countries bring with them promises of real action, such as vowing to reach net zero emissions by 2050, scaling back fossil fuel subsidies and halting construction of coal-fired power plants.

"'I told leaders not to come with fancy speeches, but with concrete commitments,' Guterres told reporters earlier this week.

"The summit will offer a key test of whether the world’s nations, which came together to sign the Paris climate accord in 2015, can actually muster the resolve to slash carbon emissions as rapidly as scientists say is needed to avoid the worst effects of climate change."

BuzzFeed News: "These Photos Show The Extent Of The Youth-Led Global Climate Strike" — "People across the world are walking out of school and work in a massive youth-led movement to draw attention to the climate crisis.

"There are more than 3,600 events planned, according to the main organizing group #FridaysForFuture. The third global youth-run climate strike of the year, Friday’s event is poised to be the biggest yet, leading up to the first-ever UN Youth Climate Summit in New York on Saturday.

"'September 20 is not our goal,' Xiye Bastida, a 17-year-old climate activist helping to organize the latest strike in New York, told BuzzFeed News. 'It’s a stepping stone, a catalyst for future action. It’s a point to tell the world we are watching.'

"The climate strike movement is just over a year-old. It started with 16-year-old Greta Thunberg, who began striking alone every Friday in August last year outside of the Swedish Parliament building in Stockholm to call attention to climate change. In the year since, the movement has spurred hundreds to thousands of kids to strike regularly. Other climate movements, most notably Extinction Rebellion in the UK and the Sunrise Movement in the US, have tapped into growing frustration about a lack of climate action."

Allison Pohle produced this hour for broadcast.

This program aired on September 23, 2019.

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