McCain Institute to host forum on US-Mexico economic relations

September 11, 2014

Media coverage and popular opinion about the U.S.-Mexico border focuses on the sensational and the negative: illegal immigration, drug trafficking, violent crime, and most recently, the spate of Central American children seeking refuge in the United States.

But little attention is paid publicly to what is arguably a far more significant set of trends: the strengthening of the U.S.-Mexico economic relationship into one that is driving growth, job creation and human development on both sides of the border. U.S. and Mexico Flag Download Full Image

On Sept. 12, the McCain Institute will co-host “Growing Together: Mexico and the United States” with the Center for American Progress at The First Amendment Forum at The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

This event, slated for 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. (MT), will feature key leaders from the United States and Mexico to initiate a broad policy conversation aimed at building on this growing economic relationship – and the potential it offers for the future. Doors will open at 9:30 a.m.

Additionally, researchers from Arizona State University will present a new economic model of the U.S.-Mexico economic relationship that offers a means of visualizing a wide range of potential policy choices.

The forum agenda will be as follows:

10:30 a.m., PANEL I: Building a Common U.S.-Mexico Economic Future

noon, lunch presentation: U.S.-Mexico Economic Model

1 p.m., PANEL II: Economic and Regional Trade Ties

Panel I will include: Secretary Jose Antonio Meade, foreign secretary, Mexico; Janet Murguia, president and CEO, National Council of La Raza; Robert B. Zoellick, former president, The World Bank; and Moderator Ambassador Kurt Volker, executive director, The McCain Institute. The luncheon presentation will be given by Anthony Evans, senior research fellow, L. William Seidman Research Institute, and Dennis Hoffman, director, L. William Seidman Research Institute.

Panel II will feature: James Ahlers, general counsel and VP for Legal Affairs, Molera Alvarez; Margie Emmermann, executive director, Mexican Institute for Competitiveness; Juan E. Pardinas, director, Mexico Institute for Competitiveness; and Moderator Daniel Restrepo, senior fellow, Center for American Progress.

If you cannot attend the forum, a livestream will be available at:

Written by Nicole Lavella

Reporter , ASU News


Study maps 15 years of carbon dioxide emissions on Earth

September 11, 2014

World leaders face multiple barriers in their efforts to reach agreement on greenhouse gas emission policies. And, according to Arizona State University researchers, without globally consistent, independent emissions assessments, climate agreements will remain burdened by errors, self-reporting and the inability to verify emissions progress.

Now, an international research team led by ASU scientists has developed a new approach to estimate CO2 emissions from burning fossil fuels – one that provides crucial information to policymakers. Called the “Fossil Fuel Data Assimilation System,” or FFDAS, this new system was used to quantify 15 years of CO2 emissions, every hour, for the entire planet – down to the city scale. Until now, scientists have estimated greenhouse gas emissions at coarser scales or used less reliable techniques. Global fossil fuel CO2 emissions Download Full Image

Researchers unveiled the new system in an article published Sept. 10 in the Journal of Geophysical Research.

The FFDAS uses information from satellite feeds, national fuel accounts and a new global database on power plants to create high-resolution planetary maps. These maps provide a scientific, independent assessment of the planet’s greenhouse gas emissions – something policymakers can use and the public can understand.

“With this system, we are taking a big step toward creating a global monitoring system for greenhouse gases, something that is needed as the world considers how best to meet greenhouse gas reductions,” said Kevin Robert Gurney, lead investigator and associate professor in ASU’s School of Life Sciences. “Now we can provide all countries with detailed information about their CO2 emissions and show that independent, scientific monitoring of greenhouse gases is possible.”

The research team combined information from space-based “nighttime lights,” a new population database, national statistics on fuel use, and a global database on power plants to create a CO2 emissions map broken down by hour, year and region.

The School of Life Sciences is an academic unit in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

“The accuracy of the FFDAS results is confirmed by independent, ground-based data in the United States,” said Salvi Asefi-Najafabady, lead author of the report and postdoctoral researcher at ASU. “This makes us confident that the system is working well and can provide useable, policy-salient information.”

“This is an incredibly helpful tool for national and international policymakers and the public to get a grasp of whether strategies to reduce greenhouse gases are effective,” said Jennifer Morgan, director of the Climate and Energy Program at World Resources Institute. “It serves as a complementary approach to current bottom-up accounting methodologies. No longer will there be a delay in understanding the latest GHG trends.”

The FFDAS showed surprising detail on global emissions before and after the Global Financial Crisis, with portions of the U.S., Europe and India recovering sooner and more dramatically. The multiyear results also showed the dramatic rise of CO2 emissions in China and South Asia. Hence, the sub-national details offer insights into economic activity at scales for which traditional economic data has been limited.

“It used to take years to assemble all the statistics on CO2 emissions,” said Peter Rayner, lead investigator from the University of Melbourne, Australia. “With this system, once the satellite data is flowing, we can update our emissions maps each year. It gives a quick check on efforts to limit climate change.”

The research team includes ASU, University of Melbourne, Australia, NOAA’s National Geophysical Data Center, Colorado State University and Purdue University. NASA funded the three-year FFDAS project.

Sandra Leander

Assistant Director of Media Relations, ASU Knowledge Enterprise