The Cost of Climate Migration (Bonus Episode)

Climate change has a price. In this bonus episode (recorded on Earth Day) our host Dr. Jay Famiglietti has a live virtual roundtable with three experts, each with a unique perspective on this multifaceted topic.

Show Transcript

Guest Bios

Robin Bronen

Robin Bronen lives in Alaska, works as a human rights attorney and has been researching the climate-induced relocation of Alaska Native communities since 2007. She received her PhD in December 2012 from the Resilience and Adaptation Program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and received her Juris Doctorate from the University of California at Davis. She is a senior research scientist at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Institute of Arctic Biology. She also works as the executive director of the Alaska Institute for Justice, a non-profit agency that is the only immigration legal service provider in Alaska, houses a Language Interpreter Center, training bilingual Alaskans to be professional interpreters, and also is a research and policy institute focused on climate justice issues. The Alaska Bar Association awarded her the 2007 Robert Hickerson Public Service award and the 2012 International Human Rights award. The Federal Bureau of Investigation awarded the Alaska Institute for Justice the 2012 FBI Director’s Community Service award and the International Soroptomost’s awarded her the 2012 Advancing the Rights of Women award.

She is working as an expert on climate-induced planned relocations with the UN High Commission for Refugees and is a member of the advisory group for the Nansen Initiative, a state-led, bottom-up consultative process intended to build consensus on the development of a protection agenda addressing the needs of people displaced in the context of natural hazards, including the effects of climate change. Her research has been featured in the Guardian, CNN, Climate Wire and Nature magazine. She has written numerous articles published by Brookings Institution, the Guardian, New York University Law Review and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, among others. She has been an expert witness for Congressional hearings focused on the community relocations and regularly presents her research at conferences focused on climate change adaptation, disaster relief reduction and climate change and population displacement.

Jesse Keenan

Jesse M. Keenan is an Associate Professor and social scientist within the faculty of the School of Architecture at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana. Keenan leads courses and seminars advancing the interdisciplinary fields of sustainable real estate and urban development. As a globally recognized thought leader, Keenan’s research focuses on the intersection of climate change adaptation and the built environment, including aspects of design, engineering, regulation, planning and financing. Keenan has previously advised on matters concerning the built environment for agencies of the U.S. government, governors, mayors, Fortune 500 companies, technology ventures, community enterprises and international NGOs.

Keenan is the author of NYC 2040: Housing the Next One Million New Yorkers (Columbia University Press, 2014) and Climate Adaptation Finance and Investment in California (Routledge, 2018), which was awarded Amazon's 'Best Of' Award for "The Best Business and Leadership Books of 2018. Keenan formerly served as the Chair and Vice-Chair for the U.S. Community Resilience Panel for Buildings and Infrastructure Systems, a federal interagency initiative formerly under the Obama White House Climate Action Plan, and as editorial team co-lead for the Built Environment at the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit at Keenan currently serves as the Executive Producer of the globally recognized climate change podcast America Adapts, which was nominated for Best “Green” Podcast at the 2021 iHeart Radio Podcast Awards. Keenan holds degrees in the law (J.D., LL.M.) and science (M.Sc.) of real estate and the built environment, including a Ph.D. from the Delft University of Technology.

Abrahm Lustgarten

Abrahm Lustgarten is a senior environmental reporter, with a focus at the intersection of business, climate and energy. He is currently covering changes at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and working on a project about pollution at U.S. Defense sites. His 2015 series examining the causes of water scarcity in the American West, “Killing the Colorado,” was a finalist for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting and received the 2016 Keck Futures Initiative Communication Award from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Lustgarten co-produced the 2016 Discovery Channel film “Killing the Colorado,” and has previously worked with PBS Frontline, including on the 2010 documentary “The Spill,” about how BP’s corporate culture of recklessness and profiteering led to the Deepwater Horizon tragedy.

His work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Scientific American, Wired, Salon, and Esquire, among other publications. He is the author of two books; “Run to Failure: BP and the Making of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster,” and also “China’s Great Train: Beijing’s Drive West and the Campaign to Remake Tibet”. Lustgarten earned a master’s in journalism from Columbia University in 2003 and a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Cornel.

Full Virtual Forum on Earth Day 2021


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