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Posts Tagged ‘COP 15’

Have you ever wondered why it is so complicated to reach a global agreement on climate change? Or why an additional 45 parts per million CO2 in the atmosphere makes such a difference?

Understanding what is necessary to achieve 80% reductions and finding a solution that works for everyone is difficult, to say the least.

Now, you can try your hand at understanding and negotiating such an agreement with the Copenhagen Climate Exercise, a role-playing simulation of the upcoming Copenhagen negotiations designed by MIT and Sustainability Institute. Set up as a highly simplified “Copenhagen-2009-like” U.N. meeting, participants play the role of delegates from three regions of the world and work together to reach a global accord that meets the group’s goal for CO2 levels. A ”UN Secretary General” receives pledges from three different “blocs”, asks her or his technical staff to simulate them in the “C-ROADS” climate simulation (or its simpler version, “C-Learn”), and informs delegates of results, often sending them back for another round of debate, strategy and collaboration.

xxDesigned for 10-60 players,  the Copenhagen Climate Exercise helps people quickly learn the policy-relevant science of climate change, viscerally experience the international dynamics, and succeed at crafting a solution to the challenges, while taking a realistic look at the scale of changes ahead as we shift to a low-carbon global economy.

Over the past year, Drew Jones of Sustainability Institute and John Sterman of MIT have run this exercise for European business leaders in Greenland, European Union government policymakers, oil executives, the US Forest Service, members of The Climate Group, and students at MIT and the University of North Carolina. The simulation debrief tends to cover multiple areas: international geo-political dynamics, the biogeochemistry of climate (oceans, plants, the carbon cycle, tipping points), cultural barriers to global agreements, managing hope and fear amidst an uncertain future, a “systems” perspective on complex issues, and the technological, legal, and behavioral changes that will help stabilize the climate.

Blog Action Day is about getting involved, so join in and share your thoughts here! Do you worry about climate change? Are you willing to make drastic changes to prevent it? Do think that we’re pretty much doomed already? Whatever your opinion, join the conversation now!

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