From breakthroughs in climate science to new legal frameworks and climate actions: what are the potentials and pitfalls?
Recent breakthroughs in climate science suggest that there is an emerging new discourse about how societies understand and take action on climate change. The new extreme event attribution science offers the potential to redress climate losses and damages through legal recourse, energising climate movements and just transformations.
The impacts of climate change already have severe consequences for people and groups in vulnerable situations. Recently seen across Europe, China and US from the extreme events in the summer of 2021. Despite mounting evidence of the impacts of climate change societies are falling short in mitigation and adaptation. Economic and technological solutions are not enough. There is a growing social mobilization around climate equity and justice.
The new science of extreme event attribution can link specific greenhouse gas emissions from human activity to particular climate events such as torrential rains, extreme heat waves or hurricanes. In a conversation between researchers from sustainability science, climate science and law we will discuss how the science can serve as evidence in court cases against governments and companies, spur social movements, and pressure politicians to take urgently required action on climate change.
The panel will tackle interrelated questions such as:
- What is the current scientific evidence for attribution science?
- What opportunities and constraints can attribution science have on future legal frameworks for climate related disasters, and what impact can it have on those responsible (fossil fuel industry or individual consumers) and for those affected by climate related disasters?
- How will the new science of attribution impact the climate movement and a just transformation?
- What can attribution science do for the most vulnerable in society?
- What philosophical and existential discussions arise from attribution science?
Linnéa Nordlander, postdoctoral fellow, Centre for International Law and Governance (CILG), Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen.
Rupert Stuart-Smith, PhD Candidate in climate science and the law at the University of Oxford
The discussion will be moderated by Emily Boyd, Professor in Sustainability Science, and Director at Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies.
The event will be held online in Zoom. Please register to receive a link here.
This event is part of Lund University’s Future Week, 18-24 October 2021. View the whole program (in Swedish) – lu.se/framtidsveckan.