MEDIA ADVISORY: The Politics Of Climate Change: UNH Researchers Available To Discuss Key Issues In The Debate About North America
Contact:  Lori Wright
603-862-0574
UNH Media Relations
May 11, 2006

DURHAM, N.H. -- What are the political issues at stake in the climate change debate in North America, and how will innovative efforts in the Northeast and California affect policymaking across the continent?

Two University of New Hampshire researchers will join experts from across the country to discuss the politics of the climate change debate Thursday, May 18, 2006, and Friday, May 19, 2006, at “Climate Change Politics in North America.” It will be held at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C., and is sponsored by the Embassy of Canada and The Energy Foundation.

Stacy VanDeveer is the 2003-2006 Ronald H. O'Neal Associate Professor and an associate professor of political science at UNH. VanDeveer and his colleague Henrik Selin, professor at Boston University, will participate in discussions on climate politics in North America and California and the Northeast’s leadership positions on climate politics. VanDeveer, in collaboration with Selin, co-organized the conference in Washington, D.C.

VanDeveer is available to discuss climate change policies among the New England states and eastern Canadian provinces, and among a larger number of U.S. states in the Northeast. He his research also looks at the development and implementation of the 2001 New England Governors Conference and Eastern Canadian Premiers (NEGC/ECP) Climate Action Plan, as well as the on-going development of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) between U.S. states from Maryland to Maine. The Governors and Premiers plan sets joint greenhouse gas reduction goals for the New England and eastern Canadian region, and relies on individual states and provinces to attempt to meet them. The RGGI joint initiative strives to regulate CO2 (carbon dioxide) from power plants by establishing a system of tradable CO2 emissions permits among the utilities facilities.

“These two initiatives –- and a number of policy actions by individual states in the Northeast -– have positioned our region as one of the leaders in continental climate change policy,” VanDeveer says. “Advocates and opponents of policies designed to address the threats posed by global climate change from across the United States and around the world are looking to our region and to California for experience in designing and implementing policies that protect our environment and encourage sustainable economic development.”

Dovev Levine is a Ph.D. student at UNH in Natural Resources & Environmental Studies. He will participate in a discussion on climate politics in the private sector and on campus. His research focuses on campus climate action. He is available to discuss the necessity of campus climate action as it relates to sustainable development, current campus actions, and areas of research necessary for further understanding of campus climate action.

“Campus action is directed at the local community, and local action is crucial to successful sustainable development. Campus climate action directly impacts human contributions to climate change by reducing campus greenhouse gas emissions. In most cases, universities are the largest energy users in their community, and local efforts are key in educating our future leaders to take a more sustainable path (universities teach approximately 14.5 million students each year),” Levine says.

EDITORS AND REPORTERS: VanDeveer can be reached at 603-862-0167 and stacy.vandeveer@unh.edu. Levine can be reached at 603-862-2234 and dovev.levine@unh.edu.

For more information on the conference, visit: http://www.wilsoncenter.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=events.event_summary&event_id=183086.