Jonathan Pershing
Program Director of Environment, Hewlett Foundation

Climate change is an urgent challenge. We are nowhere on track to meet the targets of the Paris Agreement in countries around the world. Action depends not just on reducing emissions here at home, but meeting rapid economic growth around the world – China, India, Southeast Asia – while decarbonizing the global energy mix far more quickly than we are today. 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Jonathan Pershing. Jonathan has been a key architect of the world’s landmark climate change deals, including securing the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. He served as Special Envoy for Climate Change at the U.S. State Department, was lead U.S. negotiator to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and was a senior advisor to the Secretary of Energy, Secretary of State, and the White House. He’s also worked at leading organizations like the World Resources Institute and the International Energy Agency. 

Jonathan holds a PhD in geology and geophysics; and is now doing innovative work putting the resources of the Hewlett Foundation to work addressing our global environmental and climate challenges. 

Jonathan and Jason sat down to discuss the role of government policy to send market signals, various approaches for addressing the variability of renewables, the practical impact of the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, and much more.