Category Archives: Publications

A High-Carbon Partnership? Chinese-Latin American Relations in a Carbon-Constrained World

By Guy Edwards and J. Timmons Roberts 

CDL recoperefineria_g

The Chinese financed project would replace Costa Rica’s old national oil refinery.

China’s rapidly increasing investment, trade and loans in Latin America may be entrenching high-carbon development pathways in the region, a trend scarcely mentioned in policy circles. High-carbon activities include the extraction of fossil fuels and other natural resources, expansion of large-scale agriculture and the energy-intensive stages of processing natural resources into intermediate goods.

This paper addresses three examples, including Chinese investments in Venezuela’s oil sector and a Costa Rican oil refinery, and Chinese investment in and purchases of Brazilian soybeans.

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The CDL’s policy briefings and scholarly articles from 2013


The following post provides a list of the CDL’s latest policy reports and scholarly articles published in 2013:

Scholarly Articles

2013 “No Talk, but Some Walk: The Obama Administration’s First Term Rhetoric on Climate Change and its International Climate Budget Commitments.” Graciela Kincaid and J. Timmons Roberts. Global Environmental Politics 13(4) November, 2013. Available online here.

2013 “The impact of climate change on human security in Latin America and the Caribbean” Úrsula Oswald Spring, Hans Günter Brauch, Guy Edwards and J. Timmons Roberts in Climate change and Human Security Handbook, Michael Redclift and Marco Grasso (eds.) Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. More information available here.

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Can EU and Latin America and the Caribbean lead the way towards a climate deal in 2015?

By Paola Eisner and Keith Madden 

Dilma Merkel

As the deadline for reaching a new global climate deal draws nearer, pressure is mounting on the international community to take definitive action. While the global scientific consensus hardens on the need to drastically reduce emissions to limit average temperature rise to 2 degrees, countries question whether it will be possible to come together by 2015.

With just two years on the clock, leadership is urgently needed. The EU-LAC Foundation’s new report makes the case for how existing relations and common goals between the EU and Latin America and the Caribbean can serve as a solid foundation to build momentum towards a fair, robust and ambitious agreement on climate change in 2015.

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Shaping the Durban Platform: Latin America and the Caribbean in a future High Ambition Deal

By José Alberto Garibaldi, Monica Araya, and Guy Edwards

After the longest session on record, governments at the COP17 in Durban in December 2011 agreed to negotiate by 2015 a climate deal to enter into force in 2020. The Durban Platform for Enhanced Action defied predictions that the meeting in South Africa would lead to a collapse of the UN climate talks. Many parties from Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) have worked many years to make possible the political compromise achieved in the final hours and included in the Durban Platform. Today, the challenge is to make this platform ambitious enough to avoid dangerous climate change.

In this new CDKN and Energeia Policy Brief we discuss the outcomes of the COP17, the contribution Latin America and the Caribbean made and the implications of the Durban Platform for the region. The Brief finishes by offering a set of recommendations:

1. Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) countries supporting high ambition at the international climate negotiations need to continue to shape a more ambitious climate narrative by acting together, domestically and internationally, and strengthening existing work with experts on bold action both within and outside the COPs.

2. Informal exchanges inside and outside of the UNFCCC process to jointly define key milestones for the Durban Platform and identify areas of convergence and divergence must take place within LAC countries and with Africa and Asia between now and 2015.

3. Both at home and abroad, the LAC region needs to improve how it communicates its successes on low carbon, climate resilient strategies to keep building confidence and generating a stronger impact at the international climate negotiations.

4. LAC countries need to continue to explore how best to advance national conversations linking climate change issues such as mitigation and resilience plans to national interests and potential losses in food security, infrastructure and trade.

To read the Policy Brief click here.

Brown Professor and CDL Founder Wins Prestigious Frederick H. Buttel Award

By Olivia Santiago

Second weekers

Professor of Environmental Studies and Sociology and CDL founder, J. Timmons Roberts, will be receiving the Frederick H. Buttel Award for Distinguished Scholarship in Environmental Sociology this summer in Japan. The International Sociological Association’s Research Committee on Environment and Society makes this award only every four years, making for a very competitive selection.  

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