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Chemonics at COP27 .

Event | November 8, 2022

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As the need to address the global climate crisis becomes ever more pressing, Chemonics is proud to have been part of a defining moment in the fight against climate change.

Our climate change experts were at COP27 and hosted a series of in-person panel discussions on some of the most critical topics related to climate change challenges, as well as mitigation and adaptation responses.

Exploring Climate and Fragility in Conflict Prevention, Mitigation, and Recovery

Climate change stresses social, economic, and political systems, acting as a multiplier for development challenges and enhancing the likelihood of – and impacts from – conflict. In this session, we explored compound climate-fragility risks to better understand how they can help us to identify where conflict is likely to emerge, reduce the impacts of conflict on vulnerable populations, and develop approaches to best support communities recovering from conflict.

Dr. Ruth Citrin, Executive Director, XCEPT
Ruth directs research and evidence with the UK Division of Chemonics International. She serves as Executive Director of the Cross-Border Conflict Evidence Policy and Trends (XCEPT) research program. Funded by UK Aid, XCEPT examines conflict-affected borderlands, how conflicts connect across borders and the drivers of violent and peaceful behaviour. XCEPT offers actionable research to inform policies and programmes that support peace.

Paul Currie, Associate Director, Urban Systems Centre, ICLEI Africa
In this role, Paul contributes to Urban Systems projects, chairs the ICLEI Africa Research working group, curates the annual RISE Africa event, and co-hosts ICLEI Africa’s circularity, food and water portfolios. He supports African local government officers and stakeholders to take on systems approaches both in strategy and in implementation. His projects relate to themes of food systems governance, circular economy, nature-based solutions and food-water-energy nexus.

Nik Steinberg, Senior Advisor: Climate Risk, Chemonics
Nik is a climate risk and adaptation specialist with over a decade of experience in applied climate research. As a senior climate risk advisor in Chemonics’ Climate Group, he delivers actionable, user-centric climate information while designing analytical approaches to help address decision-making challenges in the face of uncertainty.

Brian App, Senior Climate Services Director, Chemonics International
Brian is an international natural resource management specialist with over 20 years of experience working in the climate and environmental sectors. Brian currently serves as a Senior Climate Services Director in Chemonics’ Climate Group where he helps identify and better understand climate risks and opportunities to improve climate integration into programs and proposals across Chemonics global portfolio. He serves as a technical advisor to the Environment and Natural Resources Practice and as co-director for Chemonics’ conservation solutions lab partnership with Arizona State University.

Enhancing the Quality of Nature-based Carbon Credits

Lack of regulation, comprehensive standards, and equitable stakeholder engagement in nature-based carbon projects has led to pervasive issues for communities and could undermine the credibility of these projects and credits in the voluntary carbon market. As the voluntary carbon market scales up, these issues are gaining more prominence in the considerations of purchasers and investors. In this panel, we discussed the current status of the nature-based carbon credit space and examined the challenges as well as opportunities and methods for improvement.

Candace Vinke, Senior Director of Nature-based Innovation, Verra
Candace is the Senior Director of Nature-based Innovation for Verra, where she is responsible for identifying and conceptualizing new standards, tools, and programs in support of nature-based solutions. She has an extensive and diverse background in environmental markets, sustainability, poverty, and inequality.

Dr. Daniel Nepstad, Founder and President, Earth Innovation Institute
Daniel is the founder and president of the Earth Innovation Institute, which supports regional transitions to forest- and climate-positive, socially-inclusive development in the Amazon and Indonesia. He began his career conducting experiments on the Amazon forest to understand the potential for a drought- and fire-driven “forest dieback”, and has since shifted to solutions to the forest dieback and tropical deforestation.

Roberto Gómez, Director of Innovative Conservation Models, USAID Paramos and Forests Activity
Roberto has been the Director of Innovative Conservation Models for USAID´s Paramos and Forests Activity for two years. He considers himself a pioneer, with 12 years’ experience in forest carbon projects in Colombia, based on sustainable land management, including REDD+ projects, from conceptual design to validation, monitoring and verification.

Maxwell Mcgrath-Horn, Senior Advisor: Climate Finance, Chemonics
Max is a specialist in the design and financing of climate change solutions, mobilization of cross-sector partnerships, negotiation with government stakeholders, and crowding-in private finance. He is currently senior climate finance advisor in Chemonics’ Climate Group.

Measuring the Effectiveness of Climate Adaptation Interventions

Over the last decade, increased attention is being paid to adaptation programming, though with only scant evidence of what has (and has not) worked under different contexts. Despite progress on the conceptual side, practitioners are still struggling to define adaptation success, and then measure and evaluate the effectiveness of climate adaptation interventions. In this panel, discussion focused on ways to measure climate adaptation progress and the hurdles we, within the development community, must overcome to undertake adaptation programming that is both measurable and equitable.

Laurie Ashley, Resilience and Climate Adaptation Advisor, USAID
Laurie is a resilience and climate adaptation advisor at USAID dedicated to advancing adaptation strategies across sectors. She has designed, implemented, and provided technical assistance for climate change adaptation and natural resource management programs for more than 20 years. Laurie works collaboratively to understand climate risk and adaptation solutions in complex social-ecological contexts.

Emilie Beauchamp, Lead: Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning for Adaptation to Climate Change, International Institute for Sustainable Development
Emilie is a lead on monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) with IISD’s Resilience program. Emilie’s work focuses on policy and practices related to the design of MEL and evidence systems across the adaptation policy and planning cycles. She also leads and contributes to research projects exploring pathways of change and the impact of climate, land use, and conservation interventions.

David Nicholson, Chief Climate Officer, Mercy Corps
David is Mercy Corps’ Chief Climate Officer, and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of Mercy Corps’ commitment to climate change as a centerpiece of their new 10-year strategy. During his 10 years at Mercy Corps to date, David has built and led the climate and environment technical support unit and played a key role in growing an impactful climate resilience program portfolio.

Nik Steinberg, Senior Advisor: Climate Risk, Chemonics
Nik is a climate risk and adaptation specialist with over a decade of experience in applied climate research. As a senior climate risk advisor in Chemonics’ Climate Group, he delivers actionable, user-centric climate information while designing analytical approaches to help address decision-making challenges in the face of uncertainty.

Learn more about our work addressing climate change.