Confronting Climate Change

Confronting Climate Change
Due to the breadth of certain topics, three program tracks will offer conversations across both Fest 1 and Fest 2. Additionally, focused attention will be given to four different subjects during each half of the Festival. Spotlight: Health kicks off the week as a focused, two-and-a-half day forum.
Confronting Climate Change
Global Dynamic
Against a backdrop of rising sea levels and warming temperatures, arctic ice melt, and staggeringly destructive weather events with untold human and biological consequences, populations globally are already feeling the magnitude of disruption caused by changing weather patterns. Ten years from now, what might nature be hurling in our direction? How will we respond?
These discussions and presentations across the week will not question the reality of climate change. Indeed, we will give the world's leading scientists the benefit of the doubt and presume that something significant, if not profound, is taking place. Something is truly amiss in our ecosystem. Our plan is to see what we can do to mitigate effects, advance adaptation, and deal with climate change as a reality in our time.
Will the markets, so keen today to create wealth in the short term, play a new role in confronting climate-generated dilemmas? Is it possible that Wall Street and private equity markets might shift their short-term thinking and reward long-term research, development, and implementation? Will our remarkable innovators have changed our behaviors, designed new materials, machines, housing, and transportation systems?
On the policy side, will we see a new round of discussions leading to legal guidelines to mitigate climate challenges? Importantly, might there be the political will — at home and globally — for a commitment towards smarter energy use, greater emissions reductions, and putting a price on carbon pollution? What policy prescriptions will be in place to effect meaningful change? Will the climate challenge remain an ideological impasse? How will this next generation of leaders, currently considered far more concerned for the environment than their parents, tackle these issues?
2014