NOVEMBER 27, 2017: “WE ARE STILL IN” CIVIC CONVERSATION
In response to interest in the Paris Agreement and the COP 23 talks currently underway in Bonn, Germany, the UH Office of Sustainability is collaborating with the Hawaii Human Rights Institute and PACS 492 Sustainable Development in Oceania to produce an all-day symposium featuring films, workshops, and panels, culminating in a student-led model UN.
Presenters will include the official delegates to COP 23, experienced climate negotiators, UH climate experts, and student leaders.
BACKGROUND & CONTEXT:
June 1, 2017, President Donald Trump announced that the United States would be pulling out from its commitment to the Paris Accord, a global pact to respond to the threat of climate change threat by keeping a global temperature rise this century below 2 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial levels, and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
June 1, 2017, University of Hawaiʻi President David Lassner signed an open letter to the international community and parties to the Paris Agreement from U.S. state, local, higher education, and business leaders in an unprecedented action now known as #WeAreStillIn.
“We Are Still In” represents more than 2,500 leaders from America’s city halls, state houses, boardrooms, and college campuses who have signed the We Are Still In declaration since its initial release on June 5, 2017. This network of networks represents more than 127 million Americans and $6.2 trillion of the U.S. economy.
June 7, 2017, the State of Hawaiʻi was the first in the nation to adopt legislation committing the state to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in alignment with the Paris Agreement, establishing the legal basis for Hawaiʻi to continue adaptation and mitigation strategies, despite the Federal government’s withdrawal from the agreement.
November 1, 2017, Hawaiʻi Green Growth hosts annual partnership retreat at the Thompson household in Niu Valley to reconnect with its roots in the Mālama Hawaiʻi movement, set strategic partner priorities to advance integrated green growth across sectors from 2018-2020 and identify opportunities to drive joint action on the Aloha+Challenge 2030 sustainability goals.
Over 70 leaders participate, representing organizations and networks from community, public and private spheres, and articulate “a need to support multi-generational knowledge transfer to cultivate the next generation of local- global leaders.” A Local-Global Working Group is established to support pathways from the “lo‘i to the UN” to demonstrate integrated local solutions have global relevance.
November 6-20, 2017, Hawaiʻi sends an official delegation to represent the state at the United Nations Framework on Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) 23rd Conference of the Parties (COP23) held in Bonn, Germany. Official delegates include representatives from the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) and the Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC).