To address Climate change, behaviors need to be shifted
Dr. Ali Abo Sena and Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, joined by UNICEF Representative and J-PAL MENA at AUC, discuss how to shift behaviors to address climate change in Egypt
CAIRO, 29 September 2022 – Today, the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab Middle East and North Africa (J-PAL MENA) at The American University in Cairo (AUC) and UNICEF in Egypt, supported by Allianz Egypt, co-hosted a seminar titled “The Road to CoP27: Shifting Behaviors to Address Climate Change in Egypt”.
This seminar was an important high-level discussion to exchange on J-PAL’s global evidence base on improving the knowledge of climate change impacts in Egypt. J-PAL Affiliate Dr. Kyle Emerick notably shared insights on the importance to provide people with information about their energy or water use compared to their neighbors and tips about how conservation can consistently reduce consumption by small amounts.
The seminar featured Dr. Ali Abo Sena, CEO of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency, Ministry of Environment; Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for Egypt; Mr. Jeremy Hopkins, UNICEF Representative in Egypt, Dr. Ahmad Dallal, AUC President; Dr. Kyle Emerick, J-PAL Affiliate and Associate Professor of Economics at Tufts University; and Alison Fahey, Executive Director of J-PAL MENA.
Dr. Ali Abo Sena, CEO of the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency, Ministry of Environment stated that while Egypt has a low contribution to the global gas emissions, it is bearing a huge burden of its negative repercussions and the government has already put in place national mitigation and adaptation projects to address this. He added: “Egypt considers COP27 as one for implementation. We would like to move from the commitment phase to the implementation phase. We have to work on implementation as fast as we can.”
Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin added: “COP 27 adopts a holistic approach that is a departure of the reductionist approach of the years before. Dealing with the problem of climate change is not simply in reducing emissions, we need finance to adaptation strategies, we need to focus on the loss and damage. A holistic approach involves all aspects of the Paris Agreement: mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, and finance.”
Jeremy Hopkins, UNICEF Representative in Egypt said that “The climate crisis is here and accelerating. As temperatures rise, children are experiencing more frequent, more severe and more destructive climate hazards than ever before. Every child is already exposed and one billion children are at extremely high risk. This will get worse as the crisis intensifies. The world is not on track to reduce emissions – and any changes will come too late for the most vulnerable children. Action for children is needed NOW. UNICEF is calling on each country to prioritize children in climate funding and resources."
Dr. Ahmad Dallal, AUC President said: “Over the years, AUC has significantly funded and supported dozens of research projects, initiatives, and activities related to addressing the impacts of climate change. We have integrated sustainability into our curriculum, research, and service. AUC offers a top-ranking Master’s program in sustainable development focusing on green technologies, entrepreneurship, sustainable cities and communities.”
Alison Fahey, Executive Director of J-PAL MENA at AUC emphasized, “Egypt’s national development priorities aim to build resilient communities that can adapt to the realities of a changing climate. We are glad to share insights from J-PAL’s evidence base because using lessons from rigorous research can help government, NGO, and private sector efforts to strengthen resilience – from supporting technology adoption for small-scale farmers, to developing financial products to manage risk, and promoting sustainable livelihoods. Evidence-based adaptation policy will complement essential efforts to mitigate emissions and reduce energy and water usage.”
This seminar was the seventh in the Global Evidence for Egypt Spotlight Seminar Series, which brings together Egyptian policymakers and J-PAL affiliated professors in a discussion about how to tackle pertinent policy issues in Egypt. During each seminar, policymakers highlight a particular development priority in Egypt. J-PAL affiliated researchers frame the policy issue from a global perspective and offer evidence-informed insights for improving policy and program design. In dialogue, the panel of policymakers and J-PAL affiliates ground the evidence in the Egyptian context and together explore possible policy solutions.
The Global Evidence for Egypt (GE4E) Spotlight Seminar Series was launched in 2019, with the support of Allianz, to foster a discussion among Egyptian policymakers, development practitioners, and J-PAL affiliated researchers on timely policy priorities in Egypt using rigorous evidence.
About J-PAL MENA at AUC
The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab Middle East and North Africa (J-PAL MENA) at The American University in Cairo’s School of Business is a regional office established in July 2020, as a part of a larger network of research centers worldwide working to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence. Anchored by a network of more than 200 affiliated professors at universities around the world, J-PAL MENA draws on results from randomized impact evaluations to answer critical questions in the fight against poverty. We build partnerships with governments, NGOs, donors, and others to share this knowledge, scale up effective programs, and advance evidence-informed decision-making.
J-PAL was launched at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2003 and has regional centers in Africa, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and North Africa, North America, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. For more information, visit povertyactionlab.org.
About the American University in Cairo School of Business
Boasting an unrivaled reputation as the top private business school in Egypt and one of the best in Africa and the Arab world, AUC School of Business is dedicated to transforming the eager and innovative minds of today to become the responsible change agents of tomorrow, all while developing relevance and leadership in an evolving ecosystem.
Situated within AUC and enjoying nearly seven decades’ worth of history, the School offers a wide range of programs and activities that extend beyond the classroom to provide a holistic and engaging experiential learning approach. The School’s seal of excellence is the Triple Crown accreditation, which places it among the top 1 percent of educational institutions worldwide to achieve the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the Association of MBAs and the European Quality Improvement System accreditations.
For more information, visit business.aucegypt.edu/
About the American University in Cairo
Founded in 1919, The American University in Cairo (AUC) is a leading English-language, American-accredited institution of higher education and center of the intellectual, social, and cultural life of the Arab world. It is a vital bridge between East and West, linking Egypt and the region to the world through scholarly research, partnerships with academic and research institutions and study abroad programs.
The University offers 40 undergraduate, 52 master’s and two PhD programs rooted in a liberal arts education that encourages students to think critically and find creative solutions to conflicts and challenges facing both the region and the world.
An independent, nonprofit, politically non-partisan, non-sectarian and equal opportunity institution, AUC is fully accredited in Egypt and the United States. For more information, visit www.aucegypt.edu/
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org/egypt/