Webinar for Parliamentarians: COVID-19 and Climate Change

Webinar for Parliamentarians: COVID-19 and Climate Change

August 4, 2020 | 8:00 am to 10:00 am EDT | 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm CEST | Other Time Zones

The COVID-19 pandemic represents the greatest threat to humanity since World War II. In addition to the immediate public health emergency, policies such as lockdowns and sheltering in place, which are critical and effective at slowing the spread of the virus, have been catastrophic for economies. Many sectors have been significantly impacted, including agriculture and other primary activities, tourism and related services, restaurants, and retail. At the same time, these same policies have resulted in reduced emissions of carbon dioxide and dramatic improvements to air quality in cities around the world, to the benefit of the environment, public health and the fight against climate change.

As we recover from COVID-19 and re-start the global economy, what can we do to leverage this catastrophe and the resulting economic stimulus packages to build back better? Past recovery packages, such as those passed in the wake of the 2008 financial collapse, have supported business-as-usual and resulted in ever-increasing greenhouse gas emissions. However, today policymakers are looking to recovery packages as a means to spur green development. A recent example of this is the €1.8 trillion recovery package recently approved by European governments, which includes more than €500 billion for electric cars and renewable energy resources.

A number of policymakers and experts have made science-based recommendations on these critical issues, and there is a growing body of policy evidence on effective responses. To ensure that good practices from leading countries as well as experts are shared with a wide array of policymakers, the Sustainable Development Solutions Network and Parliamentarians for the Global Goals have come together to organize a high-level dialogue. This event will present current trends and foster conversations between Parliamentarians and experts on solutions, with a look as to how addressing the COVID-19 crisis can have long-lasting impacts to support the achievement of the Paris Climate Agreement and SDG 13.

This is the third in a series of four webinars on COVID-19 response and the SDGs designed for and with Parliamentarians around the world. They are meant as a forum for peer-to-peer learning, mutual inspiration, and exchange of best practices that can inspire more political action on SDGs.

The event itself will be discussion-focused, and feature interactions between the experts and Parliamentarians. Registration is open online


Draft Agenda

7:45 am ETD Virtual meeting room opens

8:00 am EDT Welcome Remarks

  • Ms. Gabriela Cuevas, President, IPU
  • Dr. Jeffrey Sachs, President, SDSN


8:05 am EDT Expert Presentations

  • Ms. Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary, UN Climate Change (UNFCCC)
  • Mr. Selwin Charles Hart, Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on Climate Action
  • Mr. Dan Jørgensen, Minister for Climate, Energy and Utilities of Denmark
  • Dr. Phoebe Koundouri, Professor in the School of Economics at the Athens University of Economics & Business


8:45 am EDT  Discussion

  • Moderated by Kirsten Brosbøl, Founder, Parliamentarians for the Global Goals
  • Questions may be asked directly to the presenters or Parliamentarians may comment on their own initiatives in this area.
  • Statements will be kept strictly to 2 minutes to maximize the number of speakers.


9:55 am EDT Closing Remarks from Kirsten Brosbøl & Gabriela Cuevas

10:00 am EDT Adjourn

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