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Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy

Distinguished climate envoy calls for ‘mobilisation equivalent to war’

17 May 2013

The 2013 Annual Lecture of the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy (CISD) at SOAS, University of London will be delivered by John Ashton CBE.

Mr Ashton gives the lecture, On Climate Change: a war by other means, at 6pm, 23 May 2013, in the Brunei Gallery at SOAS, University of London.

In his lecture, Mr Ashton will argue that an effective response to climate change is an imperative not an option. the technology and resources are available. But the intensity of effort and political will required will have more in common with wartime than normal conditions. a key battle ahead will be to prevent the emergence of a ‘new Washington consensus’ whose aim is to block once and for a legally binding global climate framework.

Mr Ashton is a distinguished diplomat with more than 30 years’ experience in the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). He served as the Special Representative for Climate Change for threee foreign secretaries between 2006 and 2012. He is now an independent commentator and adviser on the politics of climate change and Distinguished Policy Fellow at the Imperial College Grantham Institute for Climate Change. He was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2012 Birthday Honours for services to international climate change. He is a cofounder of the think tank E3G. He joined CISD as Professorial Research Associate in January 2013.

Mr Ashton is a contributor to SOAS’ MSc in Global Energy and Climate Policy (GECP), the first Masters programme to jointly address the issues of climate and energy policy in an interdisciplinary fashion. It tackles policy and regulatory change, the historical and technological evolution of energy sources, energy markets and their participants, the global governance of climate change as well as the challenges associated with transitioning to a low-carbon economy.