Notes from 6 Feb Call

Notes, CLARA call regarding release/response to IPCC Special Report on Land

Call 6 Feb 2019

Participants:  DB Lehr, Doreen Stabinsky, Ellen Hofsvang (RFN), Torbjorn, Sara Lickel, Shefali Sharma, Simone Lovera, Kelly Stone, Linda Schneider, Peter Riggs

AGENDA: a) Reflections on the S.R. Second Order Draft

      b) What’s the headline coverage going to be?  / Top-Line Messages

      c) ‘Round-the-table’ ideas about what CLARA members are working on, and CLARA’s response


a)   Simone -- Lots of useful things in this report, many things we’d want to cite and amplify:

  • More serious treatment of diet change

  • Greater cautions on BECCS and bioenergy

  • Some good references to differentiated gender impacts


  • Forestry section still wedded to ‘Sustainable Forest Management’/ ‘trees grow back’

  • No inquiry on dietary shifts into structural changes in markets etc. for livestock and commodity crops – rather, the call is just for northern countries to reduce consumption of meat and dairy

Now the question, which of the best recommendations will end up in the Summary for Policy Makers.

Important strategic consideration for CLARA, as clearly the movement in these IPCC reports is toward more of the things we want to see.  How much highlight the positive parts of the report, how much to quarrel with the things that aren’t as good yet – given the limited uptake of nuance/complex messages by the general public….

Doreen – The report has a shifting view of agroecology; the treatment of agroecology gets better as the report goes on, until by Chapter 7 it looks pretty good…!  Yes, ‘reduced consumption of meat and dairy’ is now a top-line message – the report goes ‘straight to a flexitarian approach’ without doing a very good job of defining what that means.  (Authors appear to have missed some key literature.) Unclear there was as much movement away from BECCS/ Bioenergy…

b)  What’s the headline coverage going to be?  Don Lehr observes that, compared to 18 months ago, there are now more reporters covering land and food.  Journalists focusing on this S.R. might be able to deal with more technical issues. So, a need for ‘targeted releases’, to those who could follow the arguments made in Missing Pathways.  


From this call, it did not appear that CLARA would be ‘stepping on the toes’ of any CLARA member organization regarding an already-existing plan to respond to this IPCC Special Report.  On the contrary there seemed to be good support for CLARA-identified (branded) efforts if we can agree on format, focus, and engagement of southern partners.


Most interested in food security and agroecology

We do plan to participate in the Plenary – we perceived lots of space to influence the Summary for Policy Makers.

We primarily target French newspapers, no idea yet how they will take up issues from the S.R.

Shefali Sharma – IATP

Wanting to work with other groups focused on livestock/meat+dairy issues.

Infographics were useful in Missing Pathways, do more of those, also consider video.

Simone -- GFC

Souparna major contributor in this work, he’ll be on the 11 Feb call.

GFC interested in, and hoping to have resources to invest in, work on a ‘shadow report’ – short, and reflecting examples on the ground.  Ideally should be brought together with recommendations and framing of the Missing Pathways report in the service of the 1.5 degree goal.  ‘Showcasing positive examples.’ ‘Short, holistic message’.

Important to focus on the “dietary change frees up land for…” because of proposals ranging from environmental restoration to BECCS.

CLARA still has work to do to figure out how to facilitate more southern participation, language remains a barrier.  How do we do some media and outreach work in simpler ways.

As part of whatever media strategy CLARA pursues, ‘groups in the South should be enabled to elaborate short briefing papers on the implications of the S.R. on land and 1.5 degrees report…with an eye on influencing elements included in NDCs’.   Overall, thinking through connections on IPCC report release, NDC Guidance – translating key messages from the former into useable forms of Guidance.

Particular opportunity to weave these into messaging at COP25, given the direction of land-use change in Chile and the particular fights going on.

Kelly – ActionAid

ActionAid planning less of a focus on the S.R. on Land as compared to the 1.5 Degree report, and we agree it’s a different media moment.  We want to carry CLARA’s core values regarding food security and agroecology.

Torbjorn/Ellen (RFN)

Our particular focus will be on forests, particularly the contribution of intact natural forests.

Aki Kachi, New Climate Institute

Mostly learning on this call.  The Institute may pursue work to look at financial flows from multilateral development bank (MDBs) in the land sector (previously New Climate looked at energy and transport).  So, we’re interested in that conversation. May also be involved with the Carnegie Corporation’s Geoengineering Governance effort focusing on negative emissions. (IPCC doing a Special Report on Geoengineering for 2021 – need to focus now on getting studies into peer-review prior to the deadlines for consideration).  Curious if others had seen The Lancet study and what groups are doing with it. Would be good to link to.


Further Ideas / Outputs

  • Examples of CLARA member organizations pursuing the kinds of solutions that are already outlined in ‘Missing Pathways’.  Have a new report that focuses on positive examples. Pathway for southern engagement and ownership of CLARA reporting.

  • Connecting SR on Land findings to NDC Guidance.

  • Short video.  Simone pointed toward a low-cost set of videos they had produced.

  • Use of infographics.

  • Peter talked about project with Pivot Point board chair to do some alternative cost analysis of some of the suggested pathways in ‘Missing Pathways’.

Wendy LandryComment