This is our latest audio slideshow, which Jason and I produced in record time for the launch of the Climate and Society publication at the 2009 Global Humanitarian Forum. I’ve written it before, and I’ll write it again: audio slideshows are a fantastic, low budget way to add pop to your stories. And we’ve found they’re much more virulent than traditional web stories. At IRI, we use Vimeo to share our multimedia.Filed under IRI related | Comment (0)
Rajendra K. Pachauri, chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, has agreed to serve as the next board chairman of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society.
“I think there’s so much that the IRI can do. Climate change gives us an opportunity to reengage with rest of world and the IRI is uniquely placed to do that,” Pachauri said during IRI’s board meeting last week, the first in which he served as chairman.
Columbia University hosted a small event commemorating Pachauri’s new role in the institution, as well as honoring outgoing chairman and respected climate scientist Michael B. McElroy, from Harvard University.
“We are very appreciative of Mike’s support and counsel, which have helped build the institution from its infancy to where it is today,” said IRI Director-General Stephen E. Zebiak. “And we are both excited and honored to welcome Dr. Pachauri as our board chair. He’s a recognized global leader in climate affairs, and will assist us in engaging the growing international agenda on adaptation and climate risk management.”
The Earth Institute’s Jeffrey Sachs, also an IRI board member, praised the IRI’s mission, which is to enhance society’s ability to understand, anticipate and manage climate risk in order to improve human welfare.
“The IRI was 13 years ahead of its time in seeing the importance of linking climate and society,” he said. “The world is catching up now. Climate-change adaptation is front and center, and no other institution in the world has pioneered this field with such depth and skill.”
Visit the IRI’s Governance pages to learn more about the institution’s board and its role.
Photo: Francesco FiondellaFiled under IRI related | Comment (0)
The IRI and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have forged a partnership to help save lives from the humanitarian impacts of climate change.
The IRI is developing tailored forecasting and monitoring products to help the International Federation improve its capabilities to both respond to and prepare for disasters. The need to incorporate climate information into disaster-risk reduction and decision making is urgent, evidenced by the increasing frequency, intensity and humanitarian consequences of disasters around the world.
According to the Red Cross/Red Crescent Climate Centre, which fostered the new partnership, the number of weather-related disasters each year has doubled since the early 1990s [see this report]. A changing climate coupled with changes in land use and population patterns means more people will be living in locations vulnerable to storms, droughts, floods and other climate risks. In addition to the immediate impacts on lives and livelihoods, disasters can also lead to disease outbreaks. The flood-related cholera epidemics in Senegal in 2005, for example, affected more than 30,000 people and killed nearly 500. Recently in Bangladesh, Cyclone Sidr forced millions from their homes and killed thousands. Events such as these–expected to become more frequent due to climate change–will place an increasing burden on governments and humanitarian organizations, which are responsible for mitigating impacts and saving lives.
Read more about this on the IRI features page
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Tom Wright has a post about IRI on the Energy Roundup blog.
That’s because for most people, especially the world’s poorest, forewarning of short-term changes in temperatures can help them make life-or-death decisions, these scientists say. It’s also because scientists say models that predict climate can do so with accuracy only over a year or so. The International Research Institute for Climate and Society, part of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, outlined a project to help farmers on the Indonesian part of Borneo island to predict up to six months ahead when dry weather is likely to cause uncontrollable bush fires. The institute aims to raise funding to pay farmers not to use slash-and-burn techniques during those peak dry periods.
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