Georgetown Law



During COP21, Georgetown hosted, coordinated, and participated in events on U.S.-China cooperation and North American state and provincial leadership on climate change.

The actions of states, cities, and other subnationals played an important role in setting the stage for the Paris Agreement reached at COP21 and will continue to play an important role in helping countries across the world take actions to keep global temperature increases below 2 degrees Celsius. 

Below are summaries of the Georgetown events.

U.S. State Actions to Achieve Significant GHG Reduction (Dec. 10)...

Past Highlights

At a Washington DC event hosted by The New Republic Wednesday, Georgetown Climate Center Executive Director Vicki Arroyo discussed the significance of the Paris Agreement, shared examples of subnational leadership from COP21, and discussed what's next for climate action.

Arroyo was joined for "The Next Frontier of Climate Change" panel by Jacqui Patterson, director of the NAACP's Environmental and Climate Justice Program; Steven Olikara, co-founder and president of...

Leading national security experts recently engaged in a dialogue about national security threats posed by climate change at Georgetown Law.

The March 20 event featured a keynote address by Alice Hill, senior director for resilience policy at the National Security Council, followed by a panel discussion about the climate change threats U.S. government agencies should prioritize and the greatest challenges to addressing these risks.

“The changes to our environment are a matter of National Security," Hill said.

Hill said the effects of climate change, like drought and flooding, can...

State leaders from Minnesota, Colorado, New York, and Washington discussed how their states are already reducing carbon pollution in the power sector at a U.S. Senate briefing, demonstrating different strategies that states can employ under the flexible framework proposed in the EPA's Clean Power Plan.

Participating in the March 10 briefing were the following speakers:

  • Vicki Arroyo, executive director of the Georgetown Climate Center
  • David Thornton, assistant commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
  • Martha Rudolph, director of environmental programs for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
  • Jared Snyder, assistant commissioner for air resources, climate change, and energy for the New...

The Georgetown Climate Center hosted its fifth dialogue among states, power companies, and NGOs recently to explore options for compliance under the Clean Power Plan, which will be finalized this summer.

Participants at the March 10 meeting reviewed key findings from recent modeling efforts and discussed different approaches that states could take to develop compliance plans. The agenda focused on opportunities, in either a rate- or mass-based context, for states to develop individual state plans that would leave open the option of interstate trading.

Previous convenings include:

  • ...

On March 2-3, the Georgetown Climate Center convened local sustainability officers, stormwater managers, federal officials, and experts to discuss innovative ways for local governments to incorporate green infrastructure strategies to better manage stormwater and localized flooding from heavy rainfall.

The workshop covered a number of issues, including best practices in green infrastructure pilot projects, integrating green infrastructure into existing local plans and processes (such as capital planning processes and zoning codes), methods to pay for green infrastructure through funding and financing mechanisms, and strategies to communicate with the public.


On December 3, the Georgetown Climate Center convened states, power companies, NGOs, and experts to discuss different ways that states could potentially comply with EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan.

The dialogue came just two days after the close of the comment deadline for the proposed rule. A large number of federal officials also participated in the discussion.

The convening covered a number of issues, including state and power company considerations for choosing a compliance pathway under the rule, policy design considerations, interstate...

Joined by senior state and federal officials, funders, and leaders from other climate and energy organizations, the Georgetown Climate Center recently celebrated its 5-year anniversary and state leadership on climate and energy policy.

The event on Oct. 21 featured speeches by EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Mary Nichols, chairman of the California Air Resources Board.  During the luncheon, Nichols was congratulated for receiving the Environmental Law Institute's 2014 Environmental Achievement Award.

John Podesta, counselor to President Obama on climate and energy issues, also joined Georgetown Climate Center staff, state officials, and funders at a meeting earlier in the day to congratulate the center for its success and recognize Mary Nichols for her...