United Nations-sponsored climate change training academy to be hosted by Oregon State University


Jacob Le, Photographer

This photo shows the College of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University. OSU was selected as one of just three institutions to host a multinational United Nations-sponsored training academy on climate change action and adaptation.

Luke Brockman, News Contributor

Oregon State University was selected as one of just three institutions to host a multinational United Nations-sponsored training academy on climate change.

The training will begin on Sept. 27 and last until Oct. 1.

The Climate Action and Support Transparency Training Adaptation Academy is a five-year program, beginning this year with virtual training, aimed at building capacity for meeting climate change mitigation goals and for enhancing the Measurement, Reporting and Verification principle of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. 

Alex Mauroner, chief operating officer for the Corvallis-based Alliance for Global Water Adaptation, said his organization has been collaborating with the UNFCCC for years. They had identified the need for a more specific, regionally-focused effort to improve water resource resilience. The expertise OSU displays in the areas of water resource management and policy, agriculture and climate dynamics made the university an obvious choice for collaboration, according to Mauroner.

Other partnered institutions include the IHE Delft Institute for Water Education based in the Netherlandswhich will be working with participants from both the African and European continentsand the Asian Institute of Technology based in Thailand and working with participants from the Asia-Pacific region.

Erica Fleishman, professor at OSU and director of the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute, is leading OSU’s involvement in the CASTT Adaptation Academy. In collaboration with AGWA, OSU faculty and researchers will be providing instruction specifically for countries in the Caribbean and Central and South America.

“The participants are people who are heavily involved in their country’s activities related to the Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Climate Agreement,” Fleishman said. “So, they’re heavily involved in figuring out how their country is going to address mitigation [and] adaptation of climate change under the Paris Agreement.”

The training this year is going to look different than in the coming years, according to Fleishman. For one week, participants will tune in virtually to two-hour training sessions covering a variety of topics including basics and legalities of the Paris Climate Agreement, fundamentals of the climate system, financing of climate adaptation, adaptation to water limitation, conflict resolution and adaptive management.

This year, due in part to the COVID-19 pandemic and to the program just getting started, there aren’t opportunities for OSU students to listen in or otherwise get involved. Students can look forward to possibilities opening up during the next round of training in the summer of 2022, when OSU will host their participants in person with around 30 representatives from participating countries.

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