Background Briefing: November 7, 2021


An Assessment of the Work So Far at the COP26 Climate Conference

We begin and go to Glasgow for an assessment of the COP26 Climate talks and speak with Robert Stavins, a professor and the director of the environmental economics program at the Harvard Kennedy School and a lead author of three reports by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. We discuss the work drafting an agreement that has gone on this week since the world leaders spoke on November the first and second and the work that will continue this coming week until the almost 200 government ministers sign on to an agreement. We also discuss the apparent gap between the actions of the negotiators inside and the aspirations of the demonstrators outside the huge U.N. conference venue in Glasgow.


Great Power Competition is in the Way of the Real National Security Threat, Climate Change

Then we speak with Anatol Lieven, a senior research fellow on Russia and Europe at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. He was formerly a professor at Georgetown University in Qatar and a journalist covering South Asia and the former Soviet Union for the Financial Times, BBC, and the Times of London. He joins us to discuss his new article at Responsible Statecraft, “Climate Chaos: The global threat multiplier of our time. The more the U.S. foreign policy establishment indulges in great power competition, the less prepared it is for a real crisis.”


Exaggerated Alarm at the Alleged Demise of the Democrats

Then finally we speak with Joel Rogers, the Noam Chomsky Professor of Law, Political Science, Public Affairs, and Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a contributing editor to The Nation whose books include The Hidden Election, On Democracy, Right Turn, What Workers Want and American Society: How It Really Works. We discuss the exaggerated alarm at the alleged demise of the Democrats and what they can do to both pronounce and promote a vision forward.