WEDNESDAY, 2/16/2022 | 6:00PM EST 

Foreign Affairs


Future Leaders

Climate Security and Small Island Developing States


Wednesday, February 16th, 2022, 6:00 - 7:30pm EST

Hosted on Zoom - the link will be emailed to you after registration


As the increasingly devastating impacts of climate change continue to intensify, the communities perhaps most threatened by climate change are located in small island developing states (SIDS). These states, situated across the Indian and Pacific Oceans, as well as the Caribbean Sea, could face an existential threat from rising sea levels, and have taken critical steps to encourage global action on climate security. In this event, we will hear from a panel of experts from across the climate security sphere about vulnerabilities of SIDS, the results and implications of CoP26 in terms of adaptation for SIDS, and the major viewpoints and challenges looking ahead at the next meeting of the CoP in Egypt 2022. This talk will also highlight US government engagement with climate resilience policies and the importance of youth participation on climate issues.

Foreign Affairs with Future Leaders is Onero's series of youth-led discussions which analyze various international issues and topics by collaboratively addressing their most critical questions. This event is co-hosted by the Onero Institute, the Master of International Affairs Program at the Elliott School of International Affairs, the Delta Phi Epsilon Professional Foreign Service Fraternity at GWU, and GW Young Black Professionals in International Affairs.


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Dr. Roger S. Pulwarty is the Senior Scientist in the NOAA Physical Sciences Laboratory at the Office of Oceans and Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado.  He is author of over one hundred articles, book chapters, and technical reports, focused on climate science, risk management and information services in the U.S., Latin America and the Caribbean. He designed and led widely-recognized programs dealing with climate science and services, including an adaptation in the Caribbean. Dr. Pulwarty is a lead author on the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction Global Assessment Reports, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Reports and convening lead author on the IPCC Working Group II Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. 

Born and raised in Mauritius, Karuna Rana is the Co-Founder of SYAH, an organization that brings together young people across 8 African and Asian SIDS to advance sustainable development.  Karuna is Head of Climate, Impact & Policy at LOLIWARE Inc. an award-winning, materials tech company focused on replacing single-use plastics with seaweed-derived alternatives.   As a social entrepreneur and sustainability advocate, Karuna has over 10 years of experience in the environmental sustainability space, including grassroots actions, policy advocacy, and reducing the ecological footprint of organizations.  Karuna is also a Global Shaper, and Editor of the 5th Global Environment Outlook for Youth publication by UNEP.  Karuna is recipient of prestigious awards including the Queen’s Young Leader Award and the Mary Robinson Climate Justice Award. Karuna is a Fulbright Scholar with a Master’s degree in Environmental and Energy Policy

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Adam Morrow is Director of the Young Leaders Program at Pacific Forum. In addition to managing Pacific Forum’s next-generation engagements, he provides support on programming related to the Pacific Islands and climate. Prior to joining Pacific Forum, he was a Program Specialist at Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA where he developed the Pacific Islands Maritime Domain Awareness Program. Adam also previously worked as an intern at both the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies and Pacific Forum. He holds an MA in International Affairs from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, where his research focused on climate security in the Pacific Islands and Northeast Asia. Adam received his BA in Asian Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.



Marcus D. King is John O. Rankin Associate Professor of International Affairs and Director of the Elliott School's Master of Arts in International Affairs Program. He joined the Elliott School from the research staff of CNA Corporation’s Center for Naval Analyses where he directed studies on security, resilience, and adaptation aspects of climate change. Prior, he served in Office of the Secretary of Defense where he represented the United States for negotiation of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. He is a member of the Center for Climate and Security’s Advisory Board.  

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