This high-level NDC Partnership event focused on enhancing nationally determined contributions (NDCs), including through the Climate Action Enhancement Package (CAEP), and marked the Partnership’s third year since its launch in 2016.
Andy Karsner, Conservation International Board Member, moderated this event. In his opening remarks, Pablo Vieira, Global Director, NDC Partnership Support Unit, lauded the Partnerships for its increase in membership, noting the growing number of countries working to enhance and implement their NDCs. He noted that although ambition levels to meet the Paris Agreement are not high enough yet, the achievements and commitment of Partnership members are commendable.
Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica, said that the increasing level of ambition from several countries currently undergoing socio-political change is encouraging, noting that this is “what this Partnership is all about.” He called on big emitters to join the Partnership to further increase global ambition to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, noting the importance of the 2020 review of NDCs. He highlighted that the Partnership should also represent those absent from current negotiations, pointing to the gap between the level of progress and the expectation of global citizens. On accelerating progress, he stressed that implementing NDCs feel like “sailing on uncharted seas” as green economic pathways are as yet untested. He noted that the focus has been on jobs, without a link to the environment, and called for information on the costs and benefits of climate action, compared to the cost of inaction in order to spur increased ambition.
Sigrid Kaag, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, the Netherlands, lauded the work of the Partnership, acknowledging the CAEP and growth of the Partnership’s membership to 160 as signals of its significance. She noted continued efforts to promote gender-focused and rights-based approaches and underscored the importance of promoting responsible business conduct practices to implement strong adaptation actions. On accelerating progress, she cited the importance of political will and additional partnerships with civil society to support a “whole of government” approach.
Laura Tuck, Vice President for Sustainable Development, World Bank, lauded the Partnership’s work on focusing countries through the NDC Partnership Plans, which help countries: build sustainable economies through climate tagging; enhance NDCs in the run-up to COP 26; and leverage lending through the Bank’s International Development Association. She noted work in 33 countries on providing NDC support, including through capacity building, strengthening greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories, and building donor and investor trust. She also drew attention to the coalition of finance ministers supporting NDC implementation, and pointed to CAEP assisttance to developing countries to enhance their NDCs.
Malik Amin Aslam, Federal Minister and Advisor to the Prime Minister on Climate Change, Pakistan, welcomed the work of the Partnership in identifying NDC enhancement projects and partnerships in his country. Noting that the change of government has spurred accelerated NDC actions including on climate mitigation, forestry, and renewable energy, he outlined plans to increase mangroves, forests, and electric transport, as well as address air pollution. He announced the country’s Ecosystem Restoration Fund, with support of USD 180 million from the World Bank.
Wishing the Partnership a happy third birthday, Karsten Sach, Director-General, Federal Ministry of the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), Germany, noted that the Partnership was set up to reach beyond climate and environment ministries, highlighting that for many countries, low-carbon growth pathways are becoming the norm.
Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven, Director-General, Global Issues – sector policies and programmes, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany, noted that BMU and BMZ are working with 50 countries, having pledged EUR 17 million to enhance NDCs. Stating that the NDC Partnership is country owned, she noted that this aspect guides development cooperation. She drew attention to a memorandum of understanding with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on investing in climate action.
During the discussion, high-level participants considered the work of the Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub with developing countries to deliver USD 128 million, and the development of an NDC implementation toolkit to complement the work of the NDC Partnership. They also discussed eSwatini’s experience as part of the NDC Partnership, noting the role of least developed countries in addressing climate change, including through afforestation exercises to secure the future of the next generation. Participants also considered the gap between the current conditional NDCs and the global emissions level, and the World Bank’s role in supporting developing countries.
This event showcased low emissions from research and development initiatives and policy implementation in climate change adaptation and mitigation, and waste management.
Yousef Ahmad Al-Hussaini, Qatar, moderated the event. Myung-Kyoon Lee, Hea Institutional Development, UN Environment Programme Technical University of Denmark (UNEP-DTU) Partnership (UDP), introduced UDP’s science-based advisory services, noting that it is engaged in implementing UNEP’s climate change and energy programmes, as well as research and project implementation. Pointing to synergies between research and project implementation, he described the Partnership’s strengths including data collection, which feeds into project advisory services. He also outlined policy-relevant publications, including UNEP’s 2019 Emissions’ Gap Report and UNEP’s 2018 Adaptation Gap Report, and noted UDP’s work on nationally determined contributions (NDCs) and technology needs assessments (TNAs). He said that the Partnership has supported countries in NDC preparation and in applying transparency systems for NDC implementation. Elaborating on the NDC Action project, he said that the project supports 10 countries in translating NDCs into concrete implementation action. He described the Capacity Building Initiative for Transparency (CBIT), which helps countries reach their Paris Agreement transparency targets, and the Initiative for Climate Action Transparency (ICAT), a multi-donor public-private partnership that produces guidebooks to assist countries with climate change implementation. On waste-to-energy solutions, he pointed to the Adaptation Mitigation Readiness (ADMIRE) project, which works with countries to promote innovative ways to transform waste to energy.
Abdul Aziz Al Hammadi, Manager of Conservation and Energy Efficiency, Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (Kahramaa), reported on Tarsheed, a national programme for conservation and efficient use of water and electricity. He outlined steps taken to diversify energy sources including: the renewable energy policy and strategy; encouraging renewable energy adoption among customers; and the Tarsheed Green Schools Initiative, which provides PV modules with capacity of 30kW on roofs in schools. He further highlighted Kahramaa’s water sustainability efforts, including the Qatar Water Security Policy and reducing water leakages in over 200 households. Discussing efforts to ensure climate resilient cities, Al Hammadi presented the first solar and energy storage system electric vehicle charging station, which received the 2019 Climate Action Excellence Award for its promising potential to transform the transportation sector towards low carbon development.
Junichi Fujino, Senior Coordinator for Urban Taskforce, Institute for Global Environmental Studies (IGES), spoke on his research on decarbonization in the Middle East. To address climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the city level, he recommended the development of locally determined contributions to address climate change and match NDCs, and voluntary local reviews to address the SDGs at the local level and feed into voluntary national reviews (VNRs). He pointed to Kuala Lumpur’s goal of reducing emissions by 70%, noting IGES support for the city in a co-learning process on how best to roll out low carbon technologies to reduce emissions. He stated that this could be replicated in the Middle East. On voluntary local reviews to promote SDG implementation, he noted that in Shimokawa, Japan, the citizens developed their own voluntary local reviews based on the SDGs to address sustainability challenges in their city. Calling for a more integrated approach to address environmental and economic concerns, he pointed to the “regional circular and ecological sphere” model which promotes humans living with nature in a holistic, inclusive manner.
Hamoda Youssef, Head, Technical Affairs, Qatar Green Building Council, discussed activities to foster sustainability in the country. Citing over 1.4 tonnes of municipal solid waste per year, of which 60% is organic waste, he reported on a national strategy to increase recycling from 8% to 38% by 2022 in time for the FIFA World Cup, pointing to the development of a recycling accreditation scheme. He outlined the launch of three metro lines, which were commissioned to encourage citizens to use public transportation, and efforts to instill sustainability habits at the national level through initiatives such as: Green Key, an international programme for sustainable business practices; the Qatar Green Directory; No Paper Day; Qatar Sustainability Week; Eco-Schools; and the Qatar Sustainability Awards.
In the discussion, participants highlighted: the importance of robust information in decision making and implementation in climate change adaptation; solutions related to composting agricultural waste; decarbonizing the oil and gas industry; Kahramaa’s work on the 2022 FIFA World Cup regarding reducing emissions; how locally determined contributions feed into NDCs; and strategies for decarbonizing the transport sector.
This event discussed progress made regarding the Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM), and how the mechanism under Article 6.2 of the Paris Agreement offers opportunities for parties to voluntarily cooperate to promote implementation of nationally determined contribution (NDC) implementation as well as help achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Moderator Kazuhiko Takemoto, President, OECC, opened the event, noting that discussions would focus on the experience of implementing the JCM and co-benefits for achieving the SDGs.
Makoto Kato, OECC, stated that as the JCM has grown, the OECC can share experiences in implementing projects promoting emission reductions, as well as co-benefits for achieving the SDGs. He noted that linkages and synergies between the Paris Agreement and the SDGs have the potential to generate one-way or mutual implementation benefits, noting that climate actions embedded in NDCs can help achieve multiple SDGs. He highlighted multiple benefits from a project in Viet Nam on transferring and replicating low carbon technology in the energy sector, which was not targeted toward reducing emissions, but rather geared toward reducing the cost of energy.
Maiko Uga, Office of Market Mechanisms, Ministry of the Environment (MOE), Japan, said the JCM facilitates low carbon or decarbonization technologies in developing countries. She reported partnerships with 17 countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East, including small island developing states, related to the renewable energy, transport and waste management sectors. She reported on the example of the JCM Fuorinated-Gas Recovery and Destruction Model Project implemented by the MOE in Viet Nam and Thailand, aimed at preventing therelease of these gases into the air and thus reducing carbon emissions. She further pointed to the JCM Global Match tool, which facilitates business matchmaking between companies in Japan and JCM partner countries.
Virender Duggal, Principal Climate Change Specialist, Asian Development Bank (ADB), spoke on the alignment of sustainable development with Article 6 of the Paris Agreement (cooperative approaches). He highlighted the ADB’s Strategy 2030, which includes tackling climate change, and described Carbon 2.0, which works to enhance developing country capacity to implement the JCM. He also spoke about the Climate Action Catalyst Fund to assist developing countries to access climate finance, and further highlighted the Japan Fund for the JCM. He drew attention to the Future Carbon Fund that initially operated to support the Clean Development Mechanism, noting that the co-benefits of the projects implemented under the Fund include benefits to the SDGs, affecting the lives of more than 10 million people in the region. He noted that the Bank’s support for the Japan Fund for the JCM has demonstrated co-benefits for, inter alia, health, employment, renewable energy, and access to infrastructure.
Zamba Batjargal, Ministry of Environment and Tourism, Mongolia, discussed the JCM’s contribution to sustainable development in his country, from the development of two solar power plant projects of 20MW and 21MW, and a 5MW Solar PV with an advanced battery system. He showed that Mongolia is currently issuing a total of 18,154tCO2e credits. However, he also explained that the project is providing co-benefits for, among others, energy and water use efficiency, addressing air pollution, providing sustainable infrastructure, and strengthening technical capacity.
In the panel discussion, panelists discussed the co-benefits generated by JCM implementation, and how to maximize these co-benefits to contribute to the achievement of the SDGs. Duggal reiterated that the JCM is designed to provide co-benefits, noting the importance of future JCM projects engaging with stakeholders including local communities, and calling for an estimation of co-benefits ex ante and ex post.Batjargal noted that the co-benefits of implementing JCM projects attract further private sector investment, which provides even greater benefits for communities. Uga reiterated the importance of engaging with local community stakeholders, as well as the private sector to further invest in JCM technologies to promote both climate mitigation as well as benefits for SDG achievement. Kato stated that, to date, co-benefits have been coincidental, and noted that there could be room to pre-programme co-benefits in the project design phase, and highlighted the potential role of blended finance in enhancing the co-benefits of JCM projects.
In the ensuing discussion, participants considered the challenges of implementing JCM projects, and whether JCM projects are considered under international transferable mitigation actions.
This briefing session was held to present the plans and arrangements of the second P4G Summit to be held in in Seoul, Republic of Korea, in June 2020. P4G Summits are held biannually to accelerate and showcase innovative partnerships, share best practice and foster political awareness around the need for public-private partnerships (PPP) to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The first P4G Summit took place in Copenhagen, Denmark, in October 2018.
Kim Chang-Soo, Director, Global Environment and Science Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Korea, moderated the event.
In his opening remarks, Cho Myung-Rae, Minister of Environment, Republic of Korea, highlighted his country’s commitments to combatting climate change and achieving the SDGs, drawing attention to the speech of President Moon Jae-in at the 2019 UN Climate Action Summit, where he committed to: formulate Korean sustainable development goals (K-SDGs); double contributions to the Green Climate Fund; and host the second P4G Summit in 2020.
Tomas Anker Christensen, Climate Ambassador, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Denmark, highlighted some outcomes of the inaugural P4G Summit, where participants endorsed the Copenhagen Commitment to accelerate positive action on combatting climate change and to speed up SDG delivery. The 2020 P4G Seoul Summit he said will provide a launch pad for hyping ambition toward COP 26, which some have dubbed the “ambition COP.”
Ian de Cruz, P4G Global Director, presented the P4G “hyper-collaboration” model of partnership, which provides market-based solutions to support NDC implementation. He highlighted some projects including: Africa GreenCo, aimed at establishing renewable energy in southern Africa; and the Energy Efficiency Alliance for Industry in India, aimed at promoting efficient energy motors in industries.
Keeyong Chung, Director-General for Climate Change, Energy, Environment and Scientific Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Korea, said the two-day P4G Seoul Summit, will feature sessions on: food and agriculture (SDG 2); clean water and sanitation (SDG 6); affordable clean energy (SDG 7); sustainable cities (SDG 11); and circular economy (SDG 12).
Susanne Pedersen, Assistant Director-General, Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), said her organization is working closely with the P4G Hub, and will coordinate the pre-summit sessions, which will involve high-level participants co-creating and engaging in innovative ideas, such as green industry parks as low carbon demonstration sitesm, as well as electrification of transport sector and waste management.
In closing remarks, Yoo Yeon-chul, Ambassador for Climate Change, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Korea, said no single actor can deliver all solutions to the climate challenges facing the world today, and lauded the multi-stakeholder approach taken in the organization of the P4G Seoul Summit.
Jiyoung Oh, Second Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea | [email protected]
Joohee Kim, Third Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea | [email protected]