The TroPikantes festival, presenting a mixture of artistic and scientific viewpoints, held its first edition on 22 September, at the Jardin d’agronomie tropicale in Nogent-sur-Marne, on the outskirts of Paris. Judicaël Fétiveau participated in a round table organised by the festival, on the subject of “The impacts of climate change on development and international solidarity”. He tells us about it.
How is GRET concerned by climate change?
As a project operator, GRET conducts activities in areas directly related to climate change in the majority of its intervention fields. For example, agriculture, management of forestry resources, drinking water, waste management, etc. Sometimes these sectors are themselves generators of greenhouse gas emissions; but they can also represent a solution in terms of mitigation or adaptation to climate changes.
As a civil society stakeholder working in the area of international solidarity, GRET is de facto involved in these issues. It strives to influence public authorities in developed countries, while supporting civil society organisations in developing countries to build their advocacy in favour of low-carbon development that is resilient to climate changes.
What are the main international objectives set in the fight against climate change?
The fight against climate change is based on two complementary strategies. The first is aimed at mitigation of climate change: the goal is to minimize emissions, and eventually to sequester as much carbon as possible in trees or in soil. The second consists of adapting to global warming that is unavoidable: even if we changed our modes of consumption right now, the force of inertia generated by what has already been emitted obliges us to adapt, and more so in developing countries that are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.
These two objectives are diversely coordinated in the “national contributions” corresponding to the objectives independently fixed by each State participating in the Climate Convention, as part of the Paris Agreement, which came into effect in November 2016. In the absence of a penalty system, such as that generated by the Kyoto Protocol – which set objectives only for countries traditionally responsible for global warming – the implementation and revision of national contributions will be decisive in maintaining warming below the 2°C objective.
What resources must we develop in order to sustainably fight against climate change?
GRET is a member of Coordination Sud’s “Climate and Development” Committee, which aims to create a forum of discussion and expertise, and to support development NGOs develop their advocacy thanks to their feedback on experiences and support from the world of research. One of the questions considered by this committee is the effectiveness of and risks involved in the deployment of international mechanisms to fight against climate change, which aim to qui put a price on carbon emissions or attribute a value to carbon deliberately not emitted or sequestered: the carbon tax, mechanisms for carbon compensation (exchange of emission quotas) or REDD+ (Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation) are just some examples.