On 17th May, GAUC successfully held the Academic Committee (GAUC AC) Meeting, where members of the GAUC AC identified the topics for GAUC’s Climate x campaign this year, as well as exchanged ideas on the diversified methods to promote the joint-research activities within GAUC.
After enthusiastic discussion among the GAUC AC, which is composed of renowned experts and professors from GAUC’s member universities, four topics have been selected as the key focus areas of GAUC’s Climate x Campaign this year, namely Sustainable & Secure Energy; Finance; Nature, Biodiversity & Food; Adaptation & Resilience.
The ongoing geopolitical conflict made Sustainable & Secure Energy the first topic to be nominated by the attendees at the meeting. By putting both “sustainable” and "secure" in the caption of this topic, there is an emphasis on the importance of both energy security and energy transition towards the net-zero future. Heading towards a net-zero future, both the decarbonization and the security of the energy system are integral to the goal, and that energy security which is not sustainable is not secure, either.
Finance is another topic which drew the attention of experts, which some believe is the bottleneck in conquering various challenges brought on by climate change. Although notable achievements have been realized during the COP26 regarding financial support towards developing countries, the $100 billion pledge made by Paris Agreement have yet to be lived up to. At the meeting, attendees acknowledged the recent progress made towards, and by, the private sector and suggested that investments that are needed for our future are likely to come from the industry investing in their own businesses that are fit for the future.
The Working Group II contribution to the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report (IPCC AR6WGII) reaffirmed the fact that human health and livelihoods are being devastated, unique ecosystems are being irreparably damaged, and many species have become extinct due to the impacts of climate change. Nature, Biodiversity & Food was also selected, especially in the hope to raise awareness in the next generation on the value of natural capital and the complex synergy it has with climate change.
Given that the COP27 will be held in Egypt this year, Adaptation & Resilience was also picked as one of the topics that GAUC should focus on, to help the world understand the actual and imminent climate change challenges and risks faced by African countries.
During the meeting, attendees also exchanged ideas on the methods to promote joint-research activities within GAUC. After the meeting, a survey was sent to all the members of the GAUC AC, to further leverage the perspective and strength of the academic resources of GAUC member universities.
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