Au revoir Paris!

Well, my internship at UNEP is coming to an end. After three months in Paris, I am returning home to Texas in a few days to complete the final year of my masters program in Global Policy studies. I have worked on a variety of projects aimed at engaging the private sector to voluntarily adopt more sustainable envrionmental practices–practices that not only preserve the environment and its resources, but also often benefit the corporate bottom line and public image.

In my first blog I stated that the goal of my internship was to to gain a better understanding of the processes and mechanisms behind the coordination and development of environmental policy for governments and the international community. I can say I have definitely gained valuable insight into how a United Nations organization operates and
the process of interagency collaboration. I also have an enhanced appreciation of the role business and industry can, does, and will play in addressing some of our greatest global environmental challenges, including loss of biodiversity, sustainable production and consumption, and climate change. In light of the challenges and time-frames of negotiating major international environmental treaties, raising awareness, education and voluntary initiatives may prove the more productive path.

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About christineackerson1

Christine Ackerson completed a B.Sc. in Geology at Purdue University and a M.Sc. in Geology at Texas A&M University. Christine’s primary policy interests include environmental and global climate change issues. Prior to becoming a graduate student at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, she served as an environmental consultant for URS Corporation and Montgomery Watson Consulting Engineers. In that role she has been a project and task manager for environmental investigation, remediation and compliance projects with the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Department of Defense. As a volunteer, Christine has advocated children’s environmental health legislation before the Texas Legislature and participated in a workgroup providing input to the EPA on the development of national guidelines. In 2009, Christine served as an intern with Environmental Defense Fund at the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change in Copenhagen, Denmark and participated in a Climate Change Negotiation and Sustainable Growth Policies workshop in Hiroshima, Japan. She helped coordinate an international conference on collaborative responses to climate change hosted by The University of Texas at Austin and co-sponsored by the Canadian Consulate General, the Canadian Partnership Initiative in Support of the United Nations Water for Life Decade, and the Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation of Hiroshima University, Japan. Christine currently works as a graduate research assistant with the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law on the Climate Change and African Political Stability project, a Department of Defense initiative to better understand the relationship between the growing threat of climate change and the ability of African countries to manage complex emergencies.

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