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Penn Climate Week: The Paris Agreement, Five Years Later
12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT
Virtual Event


This special edition of The World Today will kick off Penn Climate Week with a discussion of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, five years after its adoption. The most ambitious global climate accord in history, the Paris Agreement aimed to limit global temperature rise to below 2° Celsius and pursue efforts to limit the rise to 1.5°C.

Both negotiators and activists acknowledge the agreement is far from perfect, but it has still had an impact.

How has the Paris Agreement contributed to emission reduction so far? Where does the global community go from here, and what can climate organizations do to encourage more aggressive climate action? Will the COVID-19 pandemic be a catalyst for the world to embrace extreme changes in response to climate change?

Join us for this virtual edition of The World Today, as Susan Biniaz—a Perry World House Visiting Fellow this year and the lead American negotiator of the Paris Agreement—discusses her experiences in Paris and how the global community must address the climate crisis in conversation with PWH Senior Faculty Fellow Michael Weisberg.

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Susan Biniaz headshotSusan Biniaz is a former Deputy Legal Adviser at the U.S. Department of State, where she had responsibility for a wide range of international law issues. From 1989 until early 2017, she was the lead lawyer, as well as a negotiator, for all the major climate agreements, including the Paris Agreement. Since leaving the U.S. Government, she has been a Senior Fellow at the United Nations Foundation and has taught courses on international environmental law and climate negotiations at the University of Chicago Law School, Columbia Law School, and Yale Law School. She is currently a Senior Fellow and lecturer at the Yale Jackson Institute for Global Affairs. She has a B.A. from Yale and a J.D. from Columbia.

Michael Weisberg headshotMichael Weisberg is Senior Faculty Fellow and Director of Post-Graduate Programs at Perry World House, as well as Professor and Chair of Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania. He serves as Editor-in-Chief of Biology and Philosophy, advisor to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s Nairobi Work Programme, and directs Penn’s campus-wide transdisciplinary research in Galápagos. He is the author of Simulation and Similarity: Using Models to Understand the World and Galápagos: Life in Motion. Much of Professor Weisberg’s research is focused on how highly idealized models and simulations can be used to understand complex systems. He also leads efforts to better understanding the interface between humans and wildlife, between humans and the climate system, and how scientific issues are understood by communities in the Americas and in East Asia. Professor Weisberg received a B.S. in Chemistry and a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of California, San Diego in 1999, and continued graduate study in Philosophy and Evolutionary Biology at Stanford University, earning a 2003 Ph.D. in Philosophy.