See you at Climate Week NYC 2020The Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University SIPA has partnered with Climate Week NYC 2020 to curate a series of virtual events beginning September 21, 2020, focused on addressing climate change from a policy perspective. Throughout the week, we'll explore the policies, technologies and investments needed to rebuild the global economy after COVID-19, and to accelerate climate policy at the local, state, federal and international levels with a focus on U.S. leadership and policy pathways This page summarizes our events and climate-related research and other resources. 

Virtual Events

Monday, SEPTEMBER 21, 2020

  • The Impact of the Energy Transition on Global Health and Economic Prosperity The global pandemic of COVID-19 has transformed the landscape for 2020 and beyond with drastic impacts on public health and the global economy. For many it has given pause for thought and provided a new perspective on how to tackle the other global crisis, climate change. In June, the International Energy Agency published their World Energy Outlook Special Report on Sustainable Recovery, giving governments a “once-in-a-lifetime” roadmap to sustainably rebuild their economies following COVID-19. The plan demonstrates that 9 million jobs could be created by developing a resilient and cleaner energy system whilst driving economic growth. The Center on Global Energy Policy will bring together a panel of experts to discuss the road to a cleaner system and brighter economic future. | September 21, 2020 | 12:00-1:30 p.m. EDT | Register here.

Tuesday, SEPTEMBER 22, 2020

  • Achieving a Net Zero Emissions Economy: Returning Carbon to the Earth As underscored in the IPCC Special Report on 1.5, carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) is vital to reducing emissions to net-zero by mid-century. To achieve this goal, we must go a step further and decisively embrace carbon dioxide removal (CDR) techniques. Net-zero emission pledges have gained significant traction in policy circles and civil society, signaling a higher level of climate ambition. In just the first quarter of 2020, numerous governments and corporations have made major commitments to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The arithmetic requirements and technical opportunities of a net-zero global energy system are most clear when considering the road to a mid-century goal. To this end, the next decade will be central to any successful climate strategy with a net-zero ambition. With this clear premise and critical timeframe in mind, Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy and the Global Carbon Capture and Storage Institute partnered on a net-zero emissions economy project, resulting in a seminal report which the two organizations are pleased to launch with a virtual event during the 2020 New York Climate Week. The report, “Net-Zero and Geospheric Return: Thinking about 2030”, frames carbon management, including CCUS and CO2 removal, in the context of net-zero emissions and returning carbon back to where it came from, the geosphere. During this virtual event, the authors of the report will be joined by leading climate scientists and policy makers. This high-level event seeks to explore the critical role of CCUS and CDR in a net-zero emissions framework and the value of a balanced carbon management approach to 2030; an important milestone through which any entity with a net-zero pledge must measure their progress towards the ultimate 2050 goal. | September 22, 2020 | 9:00-10:30 a.m. EDT | Register here.
  • Green Recovery from COVID-19: Perspectives From Across the Globe Around the world, countries are undertaking fiscal stimulus in order to accelerate their recovery from COVID-19. In some locations, governments are integrating into their stimulus programs investments designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollution, increase clean energy innovation, create jobs, and provide climate solutions. This event will focus on so-called "green stimulus" in several settings around the globe -- in the United States, in the European Union, and in developing countries including those across sub-Saharan Africa. Join the Center on Global Energy Policy for a candid and far-reaching panel discussion on green recovery from COVID-19, which will explore various governments’ approaches to creating jobs and cutting emissions through such elements as clean energy transition funds, carbon taxes and green infrastructure. Panelists will share insights on prospects for a green recovery and how economies can emerge from this crisis stronger and more sustainable than we were before. | September 22, 2020 | 12:00-1:30 p.m. EDT | Register here.

Wednesday, SEPTEMBER 23, 2020

  • Powering an Equitable, Sustainable, and Just Global Energy Transition An equitable, sustainable, and just global energy transition will not be possible without the broad and equal participation and leadership of women in all aspects of the energy industry. Yet worldwide, the energy industry continues to be one of the least gender inclusive segments of the global economy – women make up only 22% of the traditional energy workforce and 32% of the renewable energy workforce. We need all hands on deck and diverse ideas and innovations in order to realize critical climate and emissions reductions targets by 2050 and a clear plan of action to bridge the gaps and harness the full potential of women in energy. 2020 is a pivotal year in the global climate change efforts, and the Center on Global Energy Policy’s Women in Energy (WIE) program is pleased to host a dialogue with dynamic industry leaders who are making vital contributions towards the global energy transition. The expert speakers will share their contributions to the energy transition and engage in a candid discussion about the barriers to women’s equal participation that must be addressed in order to ensure a just and sustainable transition. | September 23, 2020 | 10:00-11:30 a.m. EDT | Register here.
  • Energizing America: A Roadmap to Launch a National Energy Innovation Mission New and improved clean energy technologies are critical for swiftly decarbonizing the global economy. The United States has an opportunity to accelerate clean energy transitions abroad and build job-creating industries at home by investing in innovation. Join the Center on Global Energy Policy for the global launch of Energizing America, which lays out a roadmap to triple U.S. federal investment in clean energy research, development, and demonstration to $25 billion by 2025. This volume is the most comprehensive guide for policymakers of its kind, with a 100-day plan for the next administration and Congress and detailed recommendations for boosting investments in cutting-edge technologies, including advanced renewables, energy storage, carbon capture and removal, smart energy systems, and platform technologies. | September 23, 2020 | 12:00-1:30 p.m. EDT | Register here.
  • On Fire: The Escalating Consequences of a Warming Climate Join the Earth Institute online for a lecture by Dr. Park Williams about how climate change is fueling dangerous wildfires--and what we can expect in the future. | September 23, 2020 | 6:00-7:00 p.m. EDT | Register here.

Thursday, SEPTEMBER 24, 2020

  • Environmental Justice: Climate, Health, and Energy Climate change is already impacting the health of people around the world. At the heart of the challenge—and its solution—is the energy system, which currently produces not only the majority of human-produced greenhouse gas emissions but also the vast majority of key air pollutants that harm the health of communities around the world. While these health impacts are felt by everyone, the burden is not evenly shared, with poor and marginalized communities often experiencing a disproportionate share of these ill effects. The Center on Global Energy Policy will host a discussion on understanding the impacts of climate change and air pollution on our health as well as how the energy transition can help to protect and improve human health moving forward. | September 24, 2020 | 9:00-10:30 a.m. EDT | Register here.
  • Food and Climate Change Food systems contribute 21-37% of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to the best estimate. But food systems have received far less attention than power and transport systems in the global response to climate change. Very few countries take a comprehensive view of the food system in their climate action plans (known as “Nationally-Determined Contributions” or “NDCs”) submitted to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Columbia University, New York University, and the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP), in collaboration with FAO’s statistical experts, have launched a program to improve data on food system emissions, develop better policy responses and educate the public on the food-climate connection. Please join us for a discussion of these issues, with a particular focus on the opportunities to include food system measures in the updated NDCs that national governments submit to the UNFCCC in the next year. | September 24, 2020 | 12:00-1:30 p.m. EDT | Register here.


  • Energy Policy Tracker: Collectively, G20 governments represent about 80 percent of the world’s economic input, and together, have pledged to inject trillions of dollars into the global economy to counteract the health, social and financial shocks caused by the COVID-19 crisis. But are we building back smarter? Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy and 13 expert organizations from around the globe released a new website and database to track these investments from a climate and energy perspective. The team sends out a weekly update with the status of fossil versus clean energy funding, and a headline summary of the most important energy policy decisions taken in G-20 countries. Sign-up to receive the weekly Energy Policy Tracker update here


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