Criss Library first floor – The 1997 Kyoto Protocol was a landmark of international cooperation on climate change. It committed industrialized nations to limit greenhouse gas emissions according to individual targets. An extension of work begun with the signing of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change at Rio de Janeiro’s 1992 Earth Summit, the Kyoto Protocol ultimately led to the current Paris Climate Agreement.
Senator Chuck Hagel’s involvement in the Kyoto Protocol started upon entering the U.S. Senate in January 1997 and becoming chair of the Foreign Relations subcommittee with jurisdiction over treaties like the Protocol. During his first year in office, he and his staff would learn about international climate negotiations, investigate the details of the Kyoto Protocol, and solidify a position with Republican colleagues on the treaty. Hagel also led the Senate observer group going to Japan that December for the final round of talks.
The exhibit starts with the Paris Climate Agreement signed in 2016 and Hagel’s views on climate change agreements today. The exhibit then rewinds to show how Hagel viewed climate change and international cooperation leading up to Kyoto. Through a range of documents from the U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel Archives, visitors will see what strategies he and colleagues settled on for the Protocol and what happened in Kyoto—and after—as the U.S. faced the question of ratification. The exhibit was curated by Hagel Archivist Lori Schwartz with assistance from Hagel Fellow Abigail Cape. For more information about the U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel Archives, click here.
New material from the Hagel Archives is now open for research. Campaign Records include Hagel's campaigns for U.S. Senate in 1996 and 2002, his work on behalf of in-state and national candidates, and his involvement with the National and Nebraska Republican parties. Personal Papers cover Hagel's life before, after, and outside of his official duties in the U.S. Senate and U.S. Department of Defense. They contain biographical information, correspondence, family, board positions, memberships, and book files.
UNO alum Chuck Hagel served as a soldier in Vietnam, a U.S. Senator (Nebraska-R) for twelve years (1997-2009), and a U.S. Secretary of Defense for two years (2013-2015). When he left the U.S. Senate, he donated his records to UNO. They became the U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel Archives.
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Unless otherwise clearly stated, any views or opinions expressed as part of events, exhibitors, or presenters in the UNO Libraries (Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library and the KANEKO-UNO Library) should not be viewed as endorsements by the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) and do not reflect the official position of UNO or the University of Nebraska system.