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French & American Experts Talk Climate Change

NC State, in partnership with the Office for Science & Technology of the Embassy of France to the United States, hosted the French Ameri-Can Climate Talks (FACTS) Symposium in Raleigh on August 27th.   FACTS is a public conference series organized by the Embassies of France in both Canada and the United States that takes place in seven cities in the United States and Canada involving renowned scientists, civil society representatives, NGOs, political figures, journalists and entrepreneurs. The symposium at NC State focused on Climate-Smart Agriculture: Innovation and Resiliency. The strength of NC State’s expert faculty were complemented by distinguished speakers from the French National Institute of Agricultural Research as well as representatives from the US Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture and the Office for Climate and Land Use Change at the U.S. Geological Survey.

As a land grant university with a strong focus on the connection between human systems, including agriculture, and natural systems, NC State is keenly positioned in the realm of climate science and its nexus with agriculture from the longstanding and innovation-driven education, research and extension of our College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.  Additionally, the University is home to both the Southeast Climate Science Center and the USDA Southeast Regional Climate Hub, who helped organize the event. The symposium advanced a greater understanding of economic, environmental and societal impacts as well as opportunities for innovation, adaptation and solution-driven approaches.

The symposium was moderated by Susan Hassol, the Director of Climate Communication. Panelists included experts from both France and the United States:

U.S. Representatives

  • Dr. Luis Tupas, Deputy Director, Institute of Bioenergy, Climate, and Environment, U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Dr. Ryan Boyles, North Carolina State Climatologist and University Director, SE Climate Science Center
  • Dr. Chris Reberg-Horton, Professor of Crop Science and Assistant Director of Collaborative Research,
    Center for Environmental Farming Systems, NC State University
  • Dr. Virginia Burkett, Chief Scientist for Climate and Land Use Change, U.S. Geological Survey

French Representatives

  • Dr. Olivier Le Gall, Deputy Director general of INRA, French National Institute of Agricultural Research
  • Dr. Alban Thomas, Head of the Social Science Scientific Division (SAE2) at INRA, French National Institute of Agricultural Research


If you missed the symposium, you can listen to the panelists being featured on WUNC’s The State of Things or watch a complete video of the event:

More news about the event can be found in French or English from the Consulate General of France in Atlanta.