UN delegates met for climate negotiations in Marrakech in 2016, and 10 Emory representatives participated in the conference and presented climate change research conducted at Emory. Tyler Stern ’16C produced the following video in Marrakech:
Emory’s Delegation to the 2016 UN Climate Conference
Emily Li 17C
“COP isn’t your average conference–it’s not just attending talks (by NASA scientists and government policymakers), brainstorming in panels (about combatting climate skepticism, with youth activists from around the world), or networking (with global leaders in climate science research). The event is a testament to the widespread, prevailing nature of climate change, which is just as much ingrained in the feathers on the traditional garb of Native Americans discussing environmental justice, in the sculptures inspired by climate disasters, and in every bite of sustainable chocolate. For me, COP was all that and more–the opportunity to learn first-hand how world leaders, policymakers, and activists are approaching climate change so that in the future I, too, can be part of that solution.”
Jin Hyung Lee, Emory Law
As a law student, I tend to be in my own little bubble, only looking at climate change through the legal and policy lens. But, climate change is not simply a legal problem, and finding effective solutions to climate change requires an interdisciplinary approach. COP22 fully embraced the interdisciplinary nature of climate change. By going to COP22 and stepping outside of my little bubble, I was able to appreciate the full breadth and depth of climate change, and to understand how exactly I could use my legal education to contribute to solving climate change-related issues.
Jennie Sun 15OX 17C
“The COP 22 experience was beyond any knowledge learning process in class. It was really impactful to see that people from different parts of the world are actually struggling with various problems caused by climate change and that they are advocating for their rights and a greater attention.”
Geoff Martin (G’17), MS in Environmental Sciences
As a graduate student in environmental sciences focused on climate and energy policies, attending COP was a once in a lifetime opportunity to witness firsthand international climate negotiations and hear from experts from around the world. This was not only an incredibly exciting and valuable personal experience, but also strengthened my graduate research and helped me grow professionally. For my graduate research, I evaluated the effectiveness of state-level policies on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector. At COP I got to hear directly from state regulators about the efforts they were pursuing, the commitments they were making, and how important they viewed state-level action in the fight against climate change. Hearing from these top-level state authorities strengthened and reinforced for me the relevancy of my research in the context of global climate change. Going to COP also forced me to get out of my comfort zone. The COP is an unparalleled networking opportunity, and networking is something that I dread. Yet with more than a few gentle nudges from my advisor, by the end of COP I was connecting with other professionals, and received a number of business cards that proved to be valuable for my research. I also gained experience communicating my research at COP when I got to present at a side event and discuss my preliminary findings with the professionals and academics that visited our booth. Overall, I can confidently say that attending COP22 was the greatest privilege that I had as a graduate student, and is something that other students interested in climate change should have the opportunity to experience in the future.