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It's a Wrap for the Transition Forum 2020!

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30th Jun 2020

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This year the Transition Forum went online for a special four-part edition throughout May and June. World-class international speakers joined for the 5-week series of dynamic live talks and panel discussions about scaling up climate action. Hub Culture returned as a media partner and interviewed the amazing speakers which you can now watch via our YouTube channel or HubLive.tv.

So what did you miss at the Transition Forum online this year? Here's a little recap of the sessions week by week...



Founder of the Transition Forum and President of Aqua Asset management Lionel Le Maux opened the forum with the message that 2020 needs to be a climate turning point: the year when carbon emissions must decrease if the world is to achieve its Paris Agreement temperature rise limit of well below 2°C. We are in a time of change, and with that comes great opportunity - let's make it a year of action.

Our amazing Executive Editor Edie Lush, our MC for this year's forum, moderated the first panel 'Time To Scale-Up' with panelists Pierre CannetSabrina KriefEmmanualle Maire and Mark Brzezinski. The conversation quickly turned to the current challenges we're facing with COVID-19, and how this is affecting climate action. “Our current crisis has highlighted how pandemics are connected to the destruction of nature” said WWF's Pierre Cannet. Emmaunelle Maire stressed the importance of a 'green restart' but as Mark Brzezinski points out, there is resilience for urgent climate action under the current leadership in one of the most powerful countries in the world - the US.

You can watch the full panel discussion here


Many of the sustainability issues facing our planet today are directly or indirectly linked to food production. This session explored some of the best practices and innovations that can increase agricultural yield while preserving our soil, freshwater, oceans, forests, and biodiversity.

Alexandra Wandel, Executive Director at World Future Council highlighted some incredible examples of innovation helping to tackle this issue, like Shared Harvest, a community-supported agricultural farm that promotes sustainable #agriculture & has reduced the use of synthetic pesticides by 2.5 tonnes! On the other side of the world, Brandi DeCarli, Founding Partner of Farm from a Box also showcased her off-grid tool-kit which promotes an all-in-one system that is a simple and efficient way to start farming up to 6 acres.


How can we sustain a population growth of 2.5 billion people by 2050? In this session, panelists discussed the challenges and investment opportunities in green urban planning and development. Alzbeta Klein, Director and Global Head of Climate Business at IFC gave her keynote speech and stresses how we need to build back green after the pandemic. She argues "green buildings offer better value for investors than brown buildings. Saving money is going to be a big deal. This real estate does better for folks who live there as well as investors." 

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This plenary explored how public and private-sector decision-makers are deploying innovative, low-carbon transportation solutions while taking into account the impact on individual mobility and the movement of goods. Founder & Chief Strategy Officer Stan Stalnaker moderated the first session on Low Carbon Transportation with panelists Timothy Papandreou, Founder of Emerging Transport Advisors, Paul Holthus, Founding CEO of World Ocean Council, Sylvie Perrin, Partner at De Gaulle Fleurance & Associates and Said Mouline, General Director of the ADEREE

One of the key points from this session was the importance of building back greener after COVID-19. "We have an opportunity to course-correct" Timothy says - cities need to be built for people, not cars! Said also stressed the importance of bringing all sustainable initiatives under a unified Green Policy framework.

You can watch the full panel discussion here


The final plenary focused on the urgency to modify the way we produce and consume goods and resources if we are to reconcile our economic growth and sustainable development. How do we achieve a truly circular economy? To explore this, Stan Stalnaker moderated the first panel with Julie Andersen, Global Executive Director of Plastic Oceans International, Giulia Camilla Braga, Communications Officer & Program Manager, Connect4Climate at World Bank Group, Emmanuel Nazarenko, Managing Director & Senior Partner at Boston Consulting Group and Matthieu Toret, Lawyer & Founder of Enerlex

A real highlight was learning about the amazing work Giulia and Connect4Climate are doing with The Great Green Wall project - driving forward climate-smart solutions and restore life to degraded landscapes in order to provide food security, jobs and thriving new economies for the communities living in Africa’s Sahel region. 

You can watch the full panel discussion here 

For more information on the Transition Forum please visit the website and we hope to see you next year for more great discussions!