BCCIC Climate’s COP26 Delegation

BCCIC Climate Change’s Multilateral Affairs Team is thrilled to announce its delegation to the 26th Conference of Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) in Glasgow, United Kingdom. The delegation includes undergraduate, master’s and PhD students as well as working professionals in various sectors, representing several diverse areas of expertise including international relations, biodiversity science, economics, behavioural psychology, and agricultural science.

BCCIC’s COP delegations have two main goals: 

1) To train and empower young and future generations of Canadians working in climate diplomacy;

2) To foster a strong and professional youth presence on the domestic and international stages in the fight for young and future generations’ right to a sustainable world. By giving youth avenues to influence high-level decision-making, we are helping them claim more agency over deciding their climate future. 


Meet the Delegates

Andrea Byfuglien is currently pursuing a PhD at the University of Oxford’s School of Geography and Environment. Her academic interests lie at the intersection of environmental policy, human-nature relationships, and behaviour change, and she aims to apply behavioural psychology to issues surrounding natural governance. Before moving to Oxford Andrea worked as an advisor at the Norwegian Environment Agency. She holds a Master of Science in Resources, Environment and Sustainability from UBC, and has also worked with City of Vancouver, UBC Botanical Garden, TransLink, and others. She has been involved with BCCIC since 2019 and feels honoured to attend her third climate conference as a youth delegate. At COP 26 Andrea will focus on the inclusion of nature in national climate plans and follow the process surrounding common time frames for releasing new NDCs. 

Benjamin Georges-Picot has been a contributor to BCCIC’s UNFCCC delegation since 2017, and is a policy advisor for the climate branch. Living in Europe since 2018, he contributes to representing BCCIC at high level conferences such as the Paris Peace Forum and running BCCIC’s climate advocacy initiatives. At COP26, he will be paying attention to developments around the Ratcheting-Up mechanism, specifically the Global Stocktake and the Transparency Framework, while keeping an eye on the progress of common-time frames and the release of new NDCs. He is currently finishing a bachelor in Global Sustainable Development in the UK, and hopes to transition into a career which centers on people and the environment.

Evan Guy is currently a graduate student at the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government. Prior to studying at Oxford, Evan worked for the environmental consulting company NatureBank on projects to mitigate climate change, reduce tropical deforestation, and foster sustainable rural development in Southeast Asia, South America, and the Caribbean. Evan continues to act as the Policy Lead of the non-profit Youth4Nature. His other previous experiences include consulting for the United Nations Environment Programme, working for the City of Whitehorse, Yukon, and interning for the Human Impacts Institute. Outside of his explicitly environmental work, Evan has also worked on policy and strategy for a few national political campaigns in Canada. He has a wide range of policy interests but his main focus is on the issues of climate change, biodiversity loss and the energy transition. 

Jennifer Hong is a recent graduate from the University of British Columbia’s holding a BSc Honours in Forest Sciences specializing in Forest Ecosystem Services. She has a research interest in the relationship between human health and forestry, and is eager to use her research to show how maintaining a close connection with nature can help improve overall health. She is passionate about getting individuals outside to develop their own passions for the outdoors and to spark feelings of stewardship in order to help combat climate change. She approaches her work with a ‘people-first’, intersectional lens to ensure the often lesser-heard voices of Indigenous or racialized peoples are heard when addressing environmental issues. Currently, Jennifer is focused on developing Canada’s forest bioeconomy as a policy analyst for the Canadian Forest Service. 

She has worked for Parks Canada developing community outreach programs for all age ranges and has led a team of high school students in environmental restoration activities for the City of Surrey’s Salmon Habitat Restoration Program. Jennifer also strives to maintain a global perspective in her work which has found her working for Singapore’s National Parks Board in addition to analysing energy policy solutions to implement the Pan-Canadian Framework (i.e., Canada’s commitments that followed the Paris Climate Agreement discussions) programming for Environment and Climate Change Canada in Ottawa. At COP26, Jennifer will be following the tracks of land-use, land use change, and forestry (LULUCF) and ecosystem services. 

Skylar Kylstra is an environmental research professional currently working in the land and water systems department at University of British Columbia, where she is pursuing several different interdisciplinary research projects in the realms of food and water security, soil health, and carbon sequestration technologies for the mining industry. She also contributes to curriculum development for the Masters of Land and Water Systems program, including teaching a graduate-level course in land and water resource evaluation. She holds a B.Sc. in Global Resource Systems (2019) and a Masters of Land and Water Systems (2020) from UBC, and she has always been passionate about using science to find solutions to issues of environmental and climate justice. She has also recently developed an interest in social impact finance after completing a research fellowship this year with HSBC Social Innovation Academy. Skylar contributed to the BCCIC COP delegation since COP25 and is excited to follow up that work at COP26, where she is particularly interested in following issues related to climate finance, and advocating for more progressive climate policy in Canada. 

Eden Luymes is a political science researcher passionate about environmental policy and climate justice. She is currently pursuing her masters in Political Science at the University of British Columbia, researching the environmental impacts and governance mechanisms of the international marine shipping industry.

Eden holds undergraduate degrees from the University of British Columbia, with an Honours in Political Science with International Relations, and from the Paris Institute of Political Studies (SciencesPo). Her research focuses on climate justice and the influences of neoliberalism and neocolonialism in global climate governance. In the past she has worked at Environment and Climate Change Canada, the British Columbia Ministry of Environment & Climate Change Strategy, the United Nations Environment Programme and the Stanley Park Ecology Society. Eden sees addressing climate change as an unprecedented opportunity to heal our relationships with the Earth and with each other, and is excited to represent these interests at COP 26.

Marissa Ng is a conservationist focused on ocean and forest solutions at the intersection of biodiversity loss, climate change, and environmental justice. She is currently pursuing a dual-degree Master of Science in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management and MBA at the University of Oxford as a fully-funded Oxford Pershing Square Scholar. Her research centers on kelp forests and understanding the impact of ocean warming and marine heatwaves on these crucial marine ecosystems in British Columbia, Canada. Her previous work supported innovative forest conservation models in East Africa, where she led a team to develop an extension strategy for Partnerships For Forests, a project catalyst funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO). She has also developed decarbonization strategies and researched gender equality as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company in their sustainability and public sector practices. 

At age 19, Marissa graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) from the University of British Columbia. She has also studied at the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po). Originally from Vancouver, Canada, Marissa has lived in Toronto, Addis Ababa, Paris, and Shenzhen.

 

Kennedy Tuccaro is an undergraduate student in her last year who is achieving her B.A. of Environment and Sustainability, with a specialization in First Nations & Indigenous Studies at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC. She identifies as Indigenous and is a proud member of the Mikisew Cree First Nation. Professionally, she is the Community Manager at Bee Kind, an eco-friendly company in Vancouver where she oversees brand growth, partnerships and social media. Through this, she has acquired strong knowledge of environmental business practices and growing eco-friendly businesses. In her free time, she is beginning to consult on the development of an Indigenous Youth Engagement Strategy for a BC environmental organization, while also serving as a BCCIC Youth Delegate for COP 26, along with contributing her time to several Indigenous and environmental causes. While broadly interested in nature-based solutions and biodiversity protection, she is especially passionate about the inclusion of Indigenous perspectives in the global climate conversation and equity within a Just Transition and is looking forward to advocating for these interests at COP 26. 

Kyle Fawkes is a Global Ambassadorial Scholar with Rotary International and a Research Fellow with the Future Earth Coasts Network. He is currently completing an LLM. in Global Environmental Law and Governance at the University of Strathclyde, while also acting as the COP26 coordinator for the Strathclyde Centre for Environmental Law and Governance. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science from Quest University Canada and a Master of Science in Applied Coastal and Marine Management from University College Cork, Ireland. Kyle’s postgraduate research has involved evaluating international environmental policymaking processes and investigating avenues for conflict resolution in the global fishing industry. Kyle contributed to BCCIC’s ocean policy report: Achieving Equity in Canada’s Blue Economy: Ensuring no one gets left behind in Canada’s blue economy strategy and is eager to participate in BCCIC’s COP26 delegation.