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2. Climate Change: An International Challenge


Explore how climate change not only makes an impact on city living but encourages migration. This approach includes examining changing regional economic and conflict dynamics and questions how cities can cope in the face of the growing crisis. We will also consider the current pandemic and how this can help in the fight against climate change mitigation.

2a. Climate change induced migration – Maimunah Mohd Sharif, United Nations Human Settlements Programme
The climate is changing and so do cities and human settlements. Climate change has profound impacts on many aspects of life and city life in particular, leading to new actions, policies and community needs to address. How our cities cope with climate change will be one of the subjects of the session. A key question will be the growing notion of climate impacts on regional economic and conflict dynamics, which are inducing migration to cities and across cities.

2b. How COVID-19 can help avert climate emergency – Ignace Schops, RLKM & Europarc Federation
The world faces a pandemic. The COVID-19 virus makes no distinction of gender, race or wealth although the impacts have been massively varied. We know a lot about the origins and the drivers for this crisis. Politicians acted rapidly based on scientific advice. Fast, precise, daily monitoring (and adjusted following scientific advice), many of us undertook unprecedented measures and changed our behaviour in ways that we might previously not have thought possible. Climate change also affects all of us and the impact will be more deadly than COVID-19. Again, we know a lot about the origins and the drivers. The dangers of global warming  are  scientifically  proven.  However  there  has been no similar range of urgent actions. Can lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic help us to tackle climate change?

2c. Jane Hutt, Deputy Minister and Chief Whip, Welsh Government

2d. Panel discussion
Mitigating climate change as a world community

Maimunah Mohd Sharif & Ignace Schops & Jane Hutt

Maimunah Mohd Sharif, United Nations Human Settlements Programme

Maimunah Mohd Sharif is the Executive Director of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat). Prior to this, Ms. Sharif was the Mayor of the City Council of Penang Island, Malaysia. In 2011, she was the first woman to be appointed President of the Municipal Council of Seberang Perai and she led it to achieve its vision of a “cleaner, greener, safer and healthier place to work, live, invest and play.” Ms. Sharif holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Town Planning Studies from the University of Wales Institute of Science and Technology, and a Master of Science in Planning Studies from the Malaysia Science University.


Ignace Schops, RLKM & Europarc Federation

Ignace Schops is a Belgian  environmentalist  and  Director of the Belgian NGO Regionaal Landschap Kempen en Maasland (RLKM), President of the EUROPARC federation and a full member of the EU chapter of the Club of Rome and the Rewilding Europe Circle. Ignace was awarded the Goldman Environmental Prize in 2008, better known as the Green Nobel Prize, and became an Honorary Doctor at the Hasselt University in 2011. In 2013 he became a member of the Climate Leadership Corps of Al Gore and was decorated as “Commander of the Order of the Crown” by the Belgian King Filip.


Jane Hutt, Deputy Minister and Chief Whip, Welsh Government

Jane Hutt MS is Deputy Minister and Chief Whip in the Welsh Government. She was first elected to the Welsh Assembly in 1999, representing the Vale of Glamorgan. Janehas served as Minister for Health and Social Services, Minister for Assembly Business, Minister for Children, Education, Lifelong Learning and Skills, Minister for Business and Budget, Leader of the House, Deputy Minister and Chief Whip. Jane Hutt is an honorary fellow of Cardiff Metropolitan University and Cardiff and Vale College. She is a Welsh learner.

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