Headline: Blog

The IASS blog contains contributions from employees in all IASS departments and covers a huge range of themes. In addition to discussing the latest research findings and events, the blog authors comment on political developments.

 

New visions to support European youth on climate chaos

2018 marked the dawn of a new age of youth activism in Europe. Climate justice and the question of intergenerational justice are now taking centrestage. The slogans associated with the Fridays for Future movement capture the existential crisis of contemporary youth, triggered by the vision of “stolen futures” and the burdens they will almost certainly have to shoulder tomorrow if effective climate policies are not adopted in the present.

read more
K3 Congress on Climate Communication

How should we communicate on climate issues in the midst of a polycrisis?

The challenge of communicating on climate change in a world wracked by crises was the focus of the “K3 Congress on Climate Communication” held in Zurich earlier this month. The congress was attended by around 400 media professionals and representatives from NGOs, government agencies, public administration, political parties, and academia from German-speaking countries. The latest climate science and trends in climate communication were analyzed, discussed, and reflected upon in keynote speeches, debates, workshops, performances and films at the two-day event.

read more

US and EU must overcome protectionist tendencies to cooperate on battery supply chains

As governments across the world decarbonize their economies, the shift toward clean energy is highlighting new geopolitical tensions, supply chain vulnerabilities, and sustainability challenges associated with raw material extraction. With electrification as the main pathway to achieving decarbonization, one key technology—the battery—plays an outsize role in this shift. As the lithium-ion battery is currently the dominant technology for electric vehicles and stationary energy storage, exponential growth in critical mineral mining is required to meet demand. The International Energy Agency projects that the metals industry would need to build 50 new lithium mines, 60 nickel mines, and 17 cobalt mines by 2030 to meet global demand in line with national emissions-reduction pledges.

read more
Justice in Sustainability Lecture

What transformative sustainability studies should learn from environmental justice movements

In April’s session of the IASS focal topic “Justice in Sustainability” lecture series, Dr Leah Temper shed light on “just transformations towards sustainability” from the perspectives of those fighting on the ground to achieve them. Her discussion of environmental justice activism took us back to the roots of thinking justice and environmental politics together. Find out in this summary what transformative sustainability studies should learn from environmental justice movements a summary of her lecture. You can also rewatch the lecture and the following Q&A session on the IASS YouTube channel.

read more

A G7 Climate Club to Booster Transatlantic Relations?

Since January, Germany has held the presidency of the Group of 7 (G7). In line with its own national priorities, the German government announced ambitious climate policy goals for its G7 presidency. They included accelerating the global coal phase-out and enhancing sectoral decarbonization. The G7 presidency also introduced the concept of a G7-based climate club, which represents an opportunity to intensify transatlantic climate and energy relations.

read more

How can ambitious and just climate action be ensured through the participation of civil society?

Tasneem Essop, Executive Director of the Climate Action Network (CAN), held an inspiring lecture on the vital but often downplayed role that civil society can play in ensuring ambitious and just climate action. CAN is a global network of over 1,800 civil society organisations from over 120 countries that are fighting the climate crisis. The lecture took place as part of the monthly IASS Focal Topic Year on “Justice in Sustainability” public lecture series on May 19th, 2022.

read more

A digitalized economy for a more sustainable future

To take stock of industry’s real-world experience with digitalization to date and the expectations that exist with regard to sustainability impacts, the research group “Digitalisation and Sustainability Transformations” conducted an international study in China, Brazil, and Germany. Their results clearly show that the moderate gains made thanks to digitalization lag far behind the high hopes that many hold for it.

read more

Climate Justice Through Human Rights: The Carbon Majors Inquiry

While climate change-related disasters are increasing at an alarming rate, concrete action to limit such devastating effects is progressing at a different pace. Instead of addressing the main cause of climate change by curbing anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions from the production and consumption of fossil fuels, the Carbon Majors – the top producers of crude oil, natural gas, coal, and cement in the world – continue to be largely unregulated. In the Philippines, a landmark inquiry recently found legal grounds to hold corporations accountable.

read more