Paris Talks: Local-Global Issues

This special series of posts is produced by Juliet Pinto (Florida International University) and Phaedra Pezzullo (University of Colorado-Boulder)

In collaboration with International Environmental Communication Association, FIU’s Sea Level Solutions Center, and eyesontherise.org. Both Pinto and Pezzullo are attending COP21 in Paris. 

By Juliet Pinto, from Paris

The week before I left for the COP21 talks, I spent a considerable amount of time driving around my local neighborhoods in Miami and watching water pool on the streets. It bubbled up rapidly through storm drains, spreading across streets, turning green grass into yellow stalks, sloshing across roadways as cars splashed through and people held their shoes in their hands to gingerly tiptoe across.

No, it wasn’t a water main break or a storm: It’s higher sea levels, combined with a rainy year and the passage of annual king tides, which together mean that the infrastructure that was constructed decades ago to deal with flooding is simply being overwhelmed. And it means a glimpse into our future, as seas continue to rise at accelerated rates, when such flooding will be the new normal.

So more than ever, as a scholar who studies interfaces of news media and democracy, as well as a citizen who experiences climate change at a local level, I wonder: What will the news narrative of the COP21 talks be? […]

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Paris Talks: Securing the Future

This special series of posts is produced by Juliet Pinto (Florida International University) and Phaedra Pezzullo (University of Colorado-Boulder)

In collaboration with International Environmental Communication Association, FIU’s Sea Level Solutions Center, and eyesontherise.org. Both Pinto and Pezzullo are attending COP21 in Paris. 

By Phaedra Pezzullo, from Paris

Today, I attended a security briefing and helped set up the IECA booth with Prof. Juliet Pinto & Suzanna Norbeck, JD, from Mediators Beyond Borders (with whom we’re sharing the booth). Despite the state of emergency, the security was nothing compared to the airport in Indianapolis. Honestly. (For an excellent book on U.S. security performances from an intersectional cultural studies perspective, see Rachel Hall’s The Transparent Traveler.)

Nevertheless, today was a striking juxtaposition between those inside COP21 and those outside. Outside, as I have tweeted and posted on Facebook (for those that want pictures), there were three main events worth noting: a sunrise ceremony by Indigenous environmental activists, a display of thousands of shoes instead of people in lieu of current law, and a human sidewalk barricade that stood peacefully on the sidewalk where the marching was to occur. […]

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Paris Talks: Trials of Climate Advocacy

This special series of posts is produced by Juliet Pinto (Florida International University) and Phaedra Pezzullo (University of Colorado-Boulder)

In collaboration with International Environmental Communication Association, FIU’s Sea Level Solutions Center, and eyesontherise.org. Both Pinto and Pezzullo are attending COP21 in Paris. 

By Phaedra Pezzullo, from Paris

(An automated email alert sent by my university to my inbox this morning)

Members should avoid all demonstrations by environmental activists due to take place in the coming days in several European capital and main cities as a basic security precaution. … Avoid all protests related to the COP21 Conference due to the risk of localised violence between participants and the police. Any unrest is likely to be swiftly contained by the police, though may temporarily pose incidental risks to bystanders.” (International SOS Security Advisories, 11/27/15)

(Conversation in my living room this morning)

“Ma, why do you have to leave today?”

“Well, honey, I think climate change is the most important issue today, and

I have an opportunity to help bring attention to it. (Pause) To help your

future be safer.”

 

As my almost 6 year old looked at me with skepticism, I wondered if my child sensed my doubt. Would going make a difference? Who am I to think I matter? […]

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Eyes Represents at UN, French Meetings

Eyes member Juliet Pinto has been selected to be part of the International Environmental Communication Association’s (IECA’s) Climate Negotiations Working Group at the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21) in Paris in November. As part of the IECA’s delegation, Pinto joins Phaedra C. Pezzullo (University of Colorado[…]