SPIPA Seminar: The Age of Climate Structural Adjustment Programs

SPIPA Seminar: The Age of Climate Structural Adjustment Programs

Tuesday, 12 October 2021 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm

Birds-eye view of a large city at night

In the aftermath of the adoption of the landmark Paris Agreement on Climate Change, raising climate ambition has gained significant political salience. Modelled on a hybrid logic, the Paris Agreement is based on top-down global climate targets and bottom-up nationally determined contributions (NDCs). Yet there have emerged other developments that are significantly shaping climate action through transnational structural forces. Based on these developments, this seminar argues that we are now in the age of Climate Structural Adjustment Programs (CSAPs). Six particular forces underpinning the CSAPs are salient: emission reduction targets such as net zero; anti-fossil fuel norms shaping public opinion; divestment from fossil fuels; bans such as moratorium on coal mining and the proposed fossil fuel non-proliferation treaty; sanctions such as carbon border taxes; and climate conditionalities such as those linked to debt relief. It is therefore argued that these transnational structural forces mark a significant development of the international climate change regime. In conclusion, the seminar considers the strategic opportunities presented by the CSAPs to raise climate ambition, but also the attendant normative issues such as equity, justice and fairness. 

This seminar is co-convened by the Climate and Energy College and the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute. 

EU flagThis event has been organised with the financial support of the European Union’s Partnership Instrument. The opinions expressed are the sole responsibility of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

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Dr Kennedy Mbeva is a Fellow of the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute (MSSI), member of the Climate and Energy College, and incoming postdoctoral research associate at the Blavatnik School of Government, the University of Oxford. His current research, as part of the Future of Climate Cooperation project, examines how the global economic system can be aligned with climate stability, with a focus on emerging and developing countries. A Kenyan national, Kennedy has studied and worked in various parts of the world including China, Europe and Australia. Kennedy holds a PhD in International Relations from the University of Melbourne. 

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