National Commitments on Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions


  • DATE / TIME:
    2013•11•28    11:00 - 12:30

    In this UNU-IAS seminar, “Transforming National Commitments on GHG Emissions Reduction Based on Equity and Justice”, Prof. Donald A. Brown (Widener University School of Law) will make specific recommendations on how to increase national commitments on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions based upon “equity” and “justice”, in light of 30 years of climate change policy debates in two countries: the USA and New Zealand.

    To prevent dangerous climate change, many observers of national GHG emissions reductions commitments, which have been made under the UNFCCC, have concluded that nations must adjust current commitments to levels based upon “equity’ and “justice”. To develop a strategy for greater consideration of ethical obligations by nations, it is necessary to understand why nations have failed to recognize their ethical obligations thus far. The history of climate change debates in the two countries demonstrates that these debates have almost exclusively focused on a narrow economic and scientific framing of national climate change policy issues that hides, distorts and ignores ethical obligations.

    A strategy to transform national commitments on GHG emissions reductions based upon equity and justice must encourage express consideration of the ethical and justice dimensions of climate change policies.

    This event is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required. For more information, see the event page on the UNU-IAS website, or contact UNU-IAS at or 045-221-2300.

    About the speaker

    Donald A. Brown is Scholar In Residence for Sustainability Ethics and Law at the Widener University School of Law (Harrisburg, PA), where he teaches courses on international comparative environmental law. He is a contributing author to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 5th Assessment Report. Previously, he was Associate Professor of Environmental Ethics, Science, and Law at the Pennsylvania State University, and worked as an environmental lawyer and in the US Environmental Protection Agency.


  • Meeting Room 1, UNU-IAS
    Pacifico-Yokohama, 1-1-1 Minato Mirai
    Nishi-ku, Yokohama

  • For more information, please contact UNU-IAS at or 045-221-2300.