Archive: Environmental Justice

Bonn UNFCCC COP 23 – 6 to 17 November 2017

The 23rd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UN Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is taking place from 6 to 17 November 2017 at the headquarters of the UNFCCC Secretariat in Bonn, Germany. The conference will be convened under the Presidency of Fiji.

Delegates from the Heinrich Boell Stiftung Offices worldwide and their partners are represented in the COP 23. The Heinrich Boell Stiftung, MENA Beirut office has supported journalists from the region to travel and report on the conference from Bonn.

The following web-dossier includes media coverage of the Bonn Climate Change Conference from delegates and journalists in English, French and Arabic.

Sowing the seeds of an equitable world

The reclamation of seed as a common good has begun. Following the concept of open source, new approaches evolve that result in the cultivation of a large number of species and varieties.

By Barbara Unmüßig

Watch Day: Dalieh Exhibition

The Dalieh of Raouche Watch Day, organized in cooperation with the Heinrich Boell Foundation, is part of a larger project aiming at celebrating Beirut’s natural and built heritage. The project builds on activists effort by the Dalieh Campaign since 2013 to protect the Dalieh of Raouche, located on the Western coast of Beirut, as a site of exceptional ecological, geological and biodiversity value, archaeological and cultural value and the only remaining natural, publicly accessible landscape in Beirut.

After the Paris Agreement and the Marrakech Calls - How will Lebanon Deal with Its Commitments on Climate Change?

The Lebanese Commission for Environment and Development in cooperation with the Ministry of Environment and the Heinrich Böll Foundation, Middle East Office have the pleasure to invite you to a panel discussion entitled 'After the Paris Agreement and the Marrakech Calls - How will Lebanon Deal with Its Commitments on Climate Change?'

Place: The Green Room at the Ministry of Environment
Monday, December 5, 2016 between 10:00 and 13:00

Discussions with representatives from the Lebanese Commission for Environment and Development, the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Energy and Water, the Ministry of Agriculture, and the Ministry of Public Works and Transport.

Civil Society’s Role in Climate Politics

Finding an answer to the question of how to deal with global climate change is no easy feat and the issue has been setting challenges for international politics for decades. A scientific advisory body was established in Germany, with the aim to support the German government in the field of climate politics. The so-called WBGU, the German Advisory Council on Global Change, analyses climate change and its consequences in its role as an independent institution and compiles action plans for political decision-makers.

In 2014, the WBGU published a report on ‘Climate Protection as a World Citizen Movement’ on behalf of the German federal government departments. In its report, the advisory board clarifies that climate change is occurring and that the human population plays an important role in it. The WBGU presents suggestions for the climate conference in Paris and lays particular emphasis on the shared responsibility of protagonists at all levels. It is time for global civil society to take on more responsibility, according to the report. Yet that is not the solution.

By Barbara Unmüßig

Monetizing Nature: Taking Precaution on a Slippery Slope

Some seek to establish tradable prices for ecosystem services, claiming that markets can achieve what politics has not. However, such an approach collapses nature’s complex functions into a set of commodities stripped from their social, cultural, and ecological context and can pose a threat to the poor and indigenous communities who depend on the land for their livelihood.

By Barbara Unmüßig

The High Cost of Cheap Meat

Factory-style livestock production is a critical driver of agricultural industrialization. Its remorseless expansion is contributing to climate change, deforestation, biodiversity loss, and human-rights violations – all to satisfy Western societies’ unhealthy appetite for cheap meat. 

Regional Autumn School

The Heinrich Böll Stiftung, represented through its offices in Ramallah, Beirut, Tunis, and Rabat in cooperation with the International Union for Conservation of Nature / Regional Office for West Asia (IUCN ROWA), will be hosting a regional Autumn School “Natural Resource Rights in the Arab Middle East and North Africa” in Amman, Jordan from November 23 – 27, 2014.

Memorandum: Resource Politics for a Fair Future

In this Memorandum the notion of new politics is introduced to look at current conflicts around resource use as a complex set of interactions between nature, humans, interests, power relations and cultures. With this text the Heinrich Böll Foundation offers a perspective which combines democracy, ecology and human rights and lays out fundamental ways forward that can form the basis for fair and sustainable Resource Politics.

What hope for the 19th UN Climate Summit?

Philippines being hit by a typhoon of unprecedented ferocity and the resulting human and material disaster, which led many conference speakers to amend their speeches in the early days of the COP 19, using the tragedy to demand that a new international agreement be reached before 2015 to reduce the incidence of such events.


By Habib Maalouf

Warsaw demonstrates against climate change

The Polish capital, Warsaw, was today (16 November 2013) the scene of a protest in which activists from the UN’s climate change conference joined forces with the Polish Green party and Leftist parties and labour unions from across the world.

By Bassam Al Kantar

Climate change negotiations: A cold week in Warsaw

UN negotiations over climate change in Polish capital Warsaw are expected to create a roadmap of international treaties that all parties are expected to sign in 2015, in Paris. All participants agree that the first week of the 19th COP has shown “modest progress”.

By Bassam Al Kantar

Public Space in Beirut

How to approach a city like Beirut? By its history, its economic meaning, its art scene, its people? On the search for a city’s identity, many of its facets are revealed in certain places, namely the city’s public spaces.

By Christine F.G. Kollmar

No City Without Public Space

Guerrilla Picnicking: How hbs partner organization Nahnoo fights for Lebanese citizens' accesss to public green space.

By Christine F.G. Kollmar

Report on the 18th Climate Change Conference in Doha

Despite the proceedings of the Doha Climate Change Conference (COP 18) running a full day over their scheduled two week cut off, the nations of the Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) failed to come up with anything either new or meaningful. Doha ended as Durban had a year before: a commitment to extend the Kyoto Treaty and laying the ground for a new agreement to be brought in by 2015.

By Habib Maalouf

The Doha Experience

Every year the countries of the world - with the support of a number of scholars, specialists and members of civil society - gather at a giant meeting organized by the United Nations to negotiate the measures that shall be taken to address the risks of climate change. But what matters in this context is that usually the host country that chairs the conference bears the largest burden for its success. Was Doha ready for this challenge?

By Rami M. Serhal

The 18th Climate Change Conference in Doha repeats the failures of Durban

Doha ended as Durban had a year before: a commitment to extend the Kyoto Treaty (which, since its signatories produce less than 15 per cent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions, mean to has little to offer the cause of climate change) and laying the ground for a new agreement to be brought in by 2015.

By Habib Maalouf

After Lebanon clarifies its official position on negotiations: What to expect from the 18th Climate Change Conference in Doha (COP 18)?

With the 18th round of the Conference of Parties (COP 18) due to be held in Doha—the first time such proceedings have been hosted in an Arab country—many questions are raised over the long-term visions, expectations, capabilities and true positions of the nations taking part. What will the official Lebanese delegation bring to Doha? How has Lebanon prepared itself to deal with climate change and, more specifically, with negotiations over the issue, after pledging back in 2009 in Copenhagen to generate 12 per cent of its electricity from renewable sources?

By Habib Maalouf

Climate Change and Tourism in Lebanon

Worldwide, the inexorable growth of the tourism sector with its high demand for land and other resources has reignited the debate about the environmental impact of tourism. Given the number of natural attractions in Lebanon on the one hand and the fact that its tourism development is only beginning anew on the other hand, it offers a rare opportunity to sufficiently consider, at least in theory, the interrelations of climate change and tourism from the onset.

By Manja Riebe

Years of Drought: A Report on the Effects of Drought on the Syrian Peninsula

Years of drought have affected the eastern and northeastern regions of Syria, which are also known as the Syrian “peninsula” or “jazira”, which is considered the (agricultural) backbone of the country, the drought has led to a significant reduction in agricultural production in this area and consequently a decline in the national economy. One of the major consequences of the drought is that it has driven the majority of the population from this area towards the interior governorates in Syria where people have gone in search of a livelihood and shelter. This internal migration has also produced many humanitarian, social and health problems.

By Masoud Ali