Climate Change

Climate Change Committee

Vice Chairs

Paul Hagen
Beveridge & Diamond, PC

Catherine McKalip-Thompson
Manager of Sustainability
Bechtel Corporation

Justin Perrettson
Senior Advisor, Public Affairs


Norine Kennedy
Vice President, Strategic International Engagement, Energy and Environmental Affairs
212-703-5052 or

Mia Lauter
Policy & Program Assistant
212-703-5082 or

Please visit USCIB’s Climate Change splash page with more details on USCIB’s activites on climate.

USCIB strongly supports the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and a successful and effective outcome to the current negotiations leading to a new long term post 2015 climate agreement.

USCIB will represent American business interests in the remaining negotiations en route to and at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris at the end of the year. The agreement that will come out of these UN climate talks will dramatically shape the future of international commerce and have a lasting impact on regulatory frameworks, affecting market access and investment. But if this agreement doesn’t work with and for business, then it just won’t work. Given the effects such an agreement will have on global markets, the private sector must be included as a partner in international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and advance adaptation and resilience.

The UN post-2015 climate agreement will be built on member countries’ Independent Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs), or pledges, in which each country commits to lowering its greenhouse gas emissions by certain amounts over the next several decades. The United States, for example, has pledged to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent by 2020, and by 83 percent in 2050. These pledges will be legally binding.

The agreement will have far-reaching effects on the world economy. Global markets will be impacted, including emissions trading markets, and trade measures and barriers arising from the diverse national approaches countries are setting out. Intellectual property rights may come under attack by countries that wish to frame IPR as a barrier to the spread of green technologies. Certain technologies may be disqualified or stigmatized, limiting technical options that will be needed to further energy security and advance climate friendly development and economic growth.

Rather than using the agreement to choke off markets, technologies and investments, USCIB sees an opportunity to design international climate cooperation that works with markets to deploy investment and innovation, and to encourage companies in all sectors to integrate climate mitigation into their activities and supply value chains. USCIB Priorities for Climate Change:

Enabling Frameworks for Trade and Investment

  • All markets are important and necessary for a climate-friendly transformation. The UN climate negotiations should not give rise to barriers to trade and investment.
  • Do not overlook the role financial institutions have to play in the UN’s efforts to mobilize funds for climate action.
  • Carbon pricing is an important, but not the only, market-based climate policy tool. Different countries and regions have specific economic and energy circumstances and goals, so any such pricing at the international level would need to reflect those realities.
  • Trade will encourage climate-friendly investments and the broad dissemination of cleaner technologies and energy sources, and Paris outcomes should work in synergy with multilateral trade.

Intellectual Property Rights

  • Intellectual property rights must be preserved to protect investments in green technology. IPR should not be mentioned in any way in the UN climate agreement.
  • Technology and knowhow are deployed through trade and commercial transactions, so the right regulatory frameworks matter.
  • Society needs to consider all solutions to address climate change, therefore all technologies should be taken into account, and none should be disqualified.

Business Input: National Pledges

  • Business must be at the heart of the discussions on country pledges because it has knowledge and experience to offer on practical, cost-effective initiatives for greenhouse gas reductions.
  • Involving business in the development of country pledges will make it easier for society to support and enact the UN’s climate agenda.
  • Business engagement will help provide insight on the worldwide economic and technological implications of climate action.
  • The private sector has experience in measuring, reporting and verification which will be essential to assess countries’ comparative efforts on climate change policy.

Please use the links below to explore recent statements and reports, news stories on USCIB’s website, and media coverage related to our work.

News Stories

Climate Talks Make Limited Progress, As Clock Runs Out on Implementation Rules (9/18/2018) - The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change convened an additional negotiating session in Bangkok, Thailand from September 4 – 10. Representatives of over 190 governments gathered in intense discussions to conclude rules for implementation of the Paris Agreement, which are due at the next climate governing body meeting in Poland from December 4 - 14.
USCIB Gears Up for Talks on Global Environment Pact (9/18/2018) - The first negotiating meeting for a proposed UN Global Pact for Environment (GPE) took place at United Nations headquarters in New York September 5 - 7.

Read More

Op-Eds and Speeches

Business Makes It Happen: American Business at the UN General Assembly (9/18/2017) - The 72nd United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) gets under way this week at a time of stresses and strains in the international community.
Potter Gives Statement on Climate Change at ILO Conference (6/13/2017) - USCIB Senior Counsel Ed Potter is currently attending the International Labor Organization (ILO) International Labor Conference (ILC) in Geneva, Switzerland (June 5-16) as a U.S. employer delegate.

Read More

Staff Contact:   Norine Kennedy

VP, Strategic International Engagement, Energy and Environment
Tel: 212.703.5052

Norine Kennedy promotes U.S. business participation in international environmental policy and management initiatives, and works closely with industry, government and NGOs to promote sustainable development and green growth. She also spearheads USCIB’s strategic international engagement initiative, which seeks to advance meaningful business participation and regulatory diplomacy in inter-governmental organizations.
Read More

Related Content