Today in New York UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon has convened a historic special session with more than 70 heads of state in attendance to solely discuss and focus on the issue of perhaps the largest global challenge and collective action problem we face today — the issue of climate change.
I’ll be blogging live from the UN today along with a number of other folks you may read and recognize thanks with the support of the UN Foundation and its blog UN Dispatch. You can read posts from all the other bloggers at “Live from the UN” site.
My objective today is to steer some readership and interest towards the subject of climate change. While I’ve followed some of the debates over climate policy for almost 10 years now — since the release of the 1997 International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report — I can by no means pose as an expert on the subject. But given the rare opportunity and to attend this UN session and access a number of high-up UN officials and policy formulators, my hope is to highlight certain elements, tensions, and strategies of this global discussion that I find interesting.
Some of the issues I hope to probe include: criticisms levied against climate change policy; financial schemes to balance responsibilities and interests; the question of nuclear power; the burgeoning nexus of religion and and the environmental movement; the divide between Europe and the US; opportunities for global leadership and internationalism; and hopefully any questions and suggestions any readers would like to pose.
Just as an aside, while here I’ll also be trying to lay the groundwork for the Turtle Island String Quartet – – an innovative string quartet that fuses, adapts and creates jazz in a classic form — to someday perform for the UN in Turtle Bay. Beyond the nominal connection, their artistry and mastery of adapting classical to the contemporary is something the UN might draw inspiration from as it seeks to adapt to the new global contours and challenges of the 21st century.