Transatlantic Fellow at the International Climate Summit COP19 in Warsaw
Transatlantic Fellow Adam Pearson attended the 19th Conference of Parties (COP) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change November 2013 in Warsaw, Poland, as part of his voluntary engagement with the American NGO, SustainUS. An organization run by self-identified American youth, SustainUS works towards sustainable development goals. Each year, SustainUS sends a large delegation of Americans to COP to focus on influencing more ambitious international climate outcomes by engaging with negotiators, media, and other groups.
Adam Pearson joined the SustainUS working group aimed at bolstering domestic US climate regulations. Leading up to COP19, the team organized strategic meetings with key American congressional staff, as well as governmental officials, such as chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, Nancy Sutley; negotiator Trigg Talley at U.S. Department of State; and Jonathan Pershing of the Office of Energy Policy and Systems at the Department of Energy.
In addition to sharing the perspective of the American public craving climate action, the SustainUS delegates took away important next steps for constructively shaping domestic policies. These meetings also allowed SustainUS to build bridges with other American and international environmental NGOs, placing the SustainUS working group in discussions with leading climate policy analysts. The working group plans to continue to apply pressure to the Environmental Protection Agency by submitting public comments on recent carbon regulations for power plants.
At COP, the working group held several press conferences, weighing in on the UNFCCC negotiations and pinpointing problematic developments. The working group also supported multiple side events, organizing and sitting on panels like, "Net Avoided Emissions: a solution to address climate change in Small Island Developing States and Developing Countries" and "Business and Youth dialogue".
SustainUS will continue to push for more stringent carbon regulations in the U.S. leading up to June 2014, when final carbon pollution standards will be issued by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.