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In this podcast, Professor Myanna Dellinger interviews Dr. Armin Haas on how smart energy grids could solve some of the issues surrounding sustainable energy.s-iass_arminhaas_12286_hf.jpg

Armin Haas is a senior researcher in the Systemic Risk project of the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Potsdam (IASS), and leads the IASS activities within the EU Horizon 2020 projects Dolfins and Green-Win. Moreover, he leads the research line Integrated Risk Governance of the Global Climate Forum (GCF). At IASS his main research foci concern the economic, ecological and social sustainability of the financial system, and innovative contributions to the management and governance of systemic risks. At GCF, his research focuses on innovative approaches for the management of large-scale complex uncertainties. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Karlsruhe, Germany. Before joining IASS, he worked as senior scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and headed the research group Bayesian Risk Management. Together with colleagues from PIK and IIASA, he conceived the SuperSmart Grid.

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In this interview, recorded August 10th, 2016, Professor Myanna Dellinger interviews Wil Burns on Loss and Damage under the Paris Agreement.


Wil Burns is the Co-Executive Director of the Forum for Climate Engineering Assessment in the School of International Service at American University. He formerly directed the Energy Policy & Climate program at Johns Hopkins University, and is the immediate past President of the Association of Environmental Studies & Sciences.

Wil holds a Ph.D. in International Environmental Law from the University of Wales-Cardiff School of Law.

See also:

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This interview was recorded on July 11th, 2016. Professor Myanna Dellinger interviews Rick Reibstein about the problems and issues surrounding the compliance and enforcement of environmental issues.Rick_Reibstein.jpg

Rick Reibstein teaches environmental law to nonlawyers at BU and Harvard Extension School.


He spent almost three decades with the state of Massachusetts helping companies and others to comply with environmental rules and go beyond them to reduce the use of toxics, energy and water.   He also spent a few years as an enforcement attorney for the US EPA and the state of Massachusetts, and has worked with both agencies to coordinate assistance and enforcement initiatives, so he brings an unconventional  perspective to the question of enforcement.
Rick has just published a book called Developing Sustainable Environmental Responsibility.

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This interview was recorded on June 9th, 2016. Professor Myanna Dellinger interviews Professor of Law Gregory C. Keating of the University of Southern California Gould School of Law about the issues surrounding the Volkswagen Diesel emission scandal.  Professor Keating joined the USC Law faculty in 1991. He teaches torts, legal ethics, and seminars in legal and political philosophy.  He takes an interest in the remedies aspect of the VW “dieselgate” scandal.


Professor Keating graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa from Amherst College, and earned an M.A. and a Ph.D. from the department of Politics at Princeton University, where he specialized in legal and political philosophy. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School. After graduating from Harvard, he practiced law in Massachusetts for five years before joining the USC Law faculty. He has also been a visiting professor at Harvard Law School.

Update: After completing the two interviews on the VW “dieselgate” scandal, VW announced plans to launch 30 all-electric models to reposition itself as a leader in "green" transport.  Matthias Mueller, chief executive of VW, said huge investments would be needed as the firm moves beyond the "dieselgate" scandal.  Mr. Mueller hopes that by 2025, all-electric cars would account for about 20-25% of the German carmaker's annual sales.

This episode was recorded on the campus of Occidental College in Los Angeles.

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Looking beyond COP21: How will asset owners respond to an international climate agreement and the global energy transition to low-carbon?

Given the sluggishness of regulatory action against climate change in most nations and at the international scale, many companies continue to derive significant income from activities that endanger the climate. 

In turn, many professional investment companies such as pension funds, mutual funds, in the US and Europe, and sovereign wealth funds invest in such “high carbon” assets, placing pension savers’ and other stakeholders’ assets at great risk.  The level of risk-taking represented by high-carbon assets leaves investment fiduciaries open to legal liability. That is the argument advanced by the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP), considered in this episode.

AODP is an independent not-for-profit global organization whose objective is to protect retirement savings and other long-term investments from the investment risks posed by climate change by improving disclosure and industry best practice.

This podcast features the CEO of AODP who explains how climate change represents significant risks to portfolio value for the world’s largest investors. Two guest lawyers speak to the rise of fiduciary trust and securities law as new drivers of action on climate change risk by institutional investors around the world.  The experts are interviewed by Myanna Dellinger, Associate Professor of Law with the University of South Dakota School of Law.
  • Julian Poulter is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of the AODP.
  • Sarah Barker is a Special Counsel in the Corporate Group in Minter Ellison's Melbourne office, and has published extensively on trustee fiduciary duty and climate risk. Ms. Barker provides advice to AODP on climate risk and fiduciary duty in the Australian context.
  • Jay Youngdahl is a partner in the Houston-based law firm, Youngdahl & Citti, P.C. He is currently a Visiting Scholar at the College of Business at San Francisco State University and has been a Senior Fellow with the Hauser Institute’s Initiative for Responsible Investment at Harvard University. Mr. Youngdahl provides advice to AODP on fiduciary law and climate change risk in the United States.

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