News - Harvard Project on Climate Agreements

Harvard Project Conducts Ambitious Program at COP-24

  • Robert C. Stowe
| Jan. 14, 2019

The Harvard Project on Climate Agreements conducted an ambitious program of panel events and meetings with delegates at the Twenty-Fourth Conference of the Parties (COP-24) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), held in Katowice, Poland, COP-24 logoDecember 3–15, 2018. This was the eleventh of the annual COPs in which the Harvard Project has participated, beginning with COP-13 in Bali, Indonesia in December 2007.

COP-24 focused on finalizing the rules, procedures, and guidelines required for implementing the Paris Agreement, which was adopted at COP-21 in December 2015. Although the Paris Agreement represents a major step forward in efforts to address global climate change, much remains to be done to specify the “rulebook” required to operationalize the Agreement, which addresses climate action after 2020.

Article 6 of the Paris Agreement

At COP-24, the Harvard Project focused, in particular, on the elaboration of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement. Article 6 deals with international cooperation to address climate change and has the potential to significantly advance cost-effective, market-oriented mechanisms to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions.

The Harvard Project’s first side-event panel, on December 11, 2018, was “Elaborating and Implementing Article 6 of the Paris Agreement” — co-sponsored with the Enel Foundation. It was based in large part on a research paper written by Michael Mehling (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and released by the Harvard Project, titled “Governing Cooperative Approaches under the Paris Agreement.” Details of the event are available in a separate article here. The event was live-streamed and archived for viewing here.

Governance of Solar Geoengineering

The many questions surrounding the governance of solar-geoengineering technologies in the decades ahead was the focus of the Harvard Project’s second side-event panel. Harvard’s Solar Geoengineering Research Program co-sponsored the event, and the Program’s Faculty Director, David Keith, spoke on the panel, titled “Governance of Solar Geoengineering Deployment.” Robert Stavins, Director of the Harvard Project, moderated, and other speakers were:

  • Susan Biniaz, lead climate lawyer and a member of the U.S. climate-change negotiating team from 1989 until early 2017
  • Daniel Bodansky, Regents’ Professor at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Arizona State University
  • Janos Pasztor, Senior Fellow and Executive Director of the Carnegie Climate Geoengineering Governance Initiative

Bodansky’s and Pasztor’s presentations are linked at the bottom of this page.

The event built on a research workshop hosted by the Harvard Project in September 2018 on the same topic. Details about that workshop, along with most presentations, are available here. The Harvard Project will release a volume of briefs written by workshop participants — including all of the speakers on the COP-24 panel — in February 2019, which will be posted on the Harvard Project’s web site.

Other Events and Meetings

Robert Stavins participated as a keynote speaker or panelist in four additional events, three of which dealt with climate-change policy in China:

China’s National Emissions Trading System
Hosted by the Department of Climate Change, Ministry of Ecology and Environment (China), and others
A Dialogue on Promoting China and US Climate Action
Hosted by the Counsellors’ Office of the State Council (China) and World Resources Institute
Enhancing Capacity of Developing Countries to Address Climate Change: Issues and Opportunities
Hosted by Korea University, Global Green Growth Institute, and others
Sixth Global Climate Change Think Tank Forum: Global Climate Governance and a Community with a Shared Future for Mankind
Hosted by the National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (China) and the Joint Research Centre of the European Union

Finally, Harvard Project delegates held approximately 30 meetings at COP-24 with delegations from governments and international organizations, as well as individuals in business and non-governmental organizations. In these meetings, the Harvard-Project team presented recent research and elicited views of delegations about the progress of the negotiations. Discussions often centered on the evolution of Article 6, but also on other aspects of the Paris Agreement and larger efforts to address climate change.

Presentations from panel on “Governance of Solar Geoengineering Deployment”:

For more information on this publication: Please contact Harvard Project on Climate Agreements
For Academic Citation: Stowe, Robert C. “Harvard Project Conducts Ambitious Program at COP-24.” News, Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, January 14, 2019.

The Author