ENBOTS selected side events coverage for 11 November 2016



The following side events were covered by ENBOTS on Friday, 11 November 2016:

IISD Reporting Services, through its ENBOTS Meeting Coverage, is providing daily web coverage from the Marrakech Climate Change Conference - November 2016.
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Reshaping Development Pathways Towards Climate ResiliencePresented by the UN Secretary General’s Climate Resilience Initiative: Anticipate, Absorb, Reshape (A2R), the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO)

Moderating the session, Maarten van Aalst, A2R, introduced the Initiative, noting that it came out of the commitment to involve a wider range of stakeholders in resilience to climate change. He drew attention to aspects of resilience embedded in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as well as in the humanitarian sector, and recognized the importance of anticipating the effects of climate change and acting on them in a timely manner.

Observing that the Gulf region is already experiencing ecological challenges due to climate changes as well as socio-economic challenges due to dependence on fossil fuels, Khalid Abuleif, Chief Negotiator, Saudi Arabia, welcomed the Paris Agreement as a means to reshape the future of the region. He said that the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) in the region focus on climate resilience, and highlighted efforts to increase resilience in water management in Saudi Arabia.

Mulugeta Mengist Ayalew, Director, Climate Change Affairs, Ethiopia, outlined national efforts to increase resilience, saying that they recognize the need to invest in: rural and urban social schemes; agricultural resilience; transport; and resilient energy mixes.

Jay Koh, Global Adaptation and Resilience Investment Working Group, said that the private sector has the expertise, capability and finance to engage in resilience and climate adaptation issues, but requires: standards and data using harmonized approaches; coordinated activity to draw private sector finance; and increased blended finance.

Highlighting the growing global population and the need to increase food production, John Roome, World Bank, stressed the fundamental need to rethink agriculture, infrastructure and resilient social protection. He also spoke about the need for resilient cities, which he said will only be achieved through systemic changes in design decisions made now.

Lisa Dale, Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy, described the Center’s partnership with the A2R Initiative, noting the gaps in climate resilience data and spoke of the challenges in reshaping development pathways. She highlighted the difficulties in understanding national resilience budgeting, as resilience is integrated into planning processes, stressing that the most important adaptation work occurs at the sub-national and local levels.

In the ensuing discussion, participants addressed, inter alia: Saudi Arabia’s support for vulnerable countries, including Small Island Developing States (SIDS) through South-South cooperation; the importance of ramping up resilience at the same speed as mitigation; Ethiopia’s efforts in integrating early warning systems into resilience measures; and the need to integrate evidence from the ground into policies to create incremental change.

From L-R: Jay Koh, Global Adaptation and Resilience Investment Working Group; Mulugeta Mengist Ayalew, Director, Climate Change Affairs, Ethiopia; and Khalid Abuleif, Chief Negotiator, Saudi Arabia

Maarten van Aalst, A2R, described A2R as a facilitative platform on resilience.

Khalid Abuleif, Chief Negotiator, Saudi Arabia, noted that, in order to strengthen resilience, any new sector will be subject to heavy regulations and evaluated on parameters such as energy intensity, use of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies, use of natural gas and increasing the standards of flaring.

Lisa Dale, Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy, noted that for most countries the challenge of reshaping development pathways is usually a capacity challenge.

To increase resilience in Ethiopia, Mulugeta Mengist Ayalew, Director, Climate Change Affairs, Ethiopia, said a significant amount of resources are required, and that while they are trying to primarily rely on domestic resources, international support will be needed.

Jay Koh, Global Adaptation and Resilience Investment Working Group, stated that the private sector has two messages for the climate sector: “we are here, and we want your engagement."

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The Green Climate Fund (GCF) Update – 2016 Progress in Supporting Low-Emission and Climate-Resilient Development PathwaysPresented by the GCF

This side event, moderated by Clifford Polycarp, GCF, presented the progress towards supporting developing countries in project financing, as well as initiatives to build on complementarity and coherence with other multilateral funds.

Underscoring the GCF’s core principles, Zaheer Fakir, GCF Co-Chair, emphasized its role in empowering countries, unlocking their potential and promoting domestic institutional capacities. He stressed the slogan “business unusual,” underscoring direct access and institutional behavioral change.

Noting that US$1 billion worth of projects have already been approved, Ewen McDonald, GCF Co-Chair, stressed that GCF’s portfolio is balanced with 27% of the projects focusing on mitigation, 28% on adaptation and 45% being of a cross-cutting nature. Underscoring the aspirational goal of utilizing US$2.5 billion for funding projects this year, he urged for an increase in the volume and quality of proposals.

Javier Manzanares, GCF Executive Director ad interim, focused, among others, on: the Readiness Programme support; design and implementation of National Adaptation Plans (NAPs); and harnessing innovation and technology. He further highlighted the need to maximize the engagement of the private sector, build institutional capabilities and strong relationships with all stakeholders, and invest in transformational actions in a country-driven manner.

Ousseynou Nakoulima, GCF, provided an overview of the state of play, noting that more than 90 country programmes have been funded, and giving information on their geographical distribution. He described structured dialogues as the way to facilitate discussions between countries and entities, and underscored the diverse network of GCF partners as key actors to deliver the programmes’ objectives.

Jiwoo Choi, GCF, discussed the GCF portfolio by region, instrument and adaptation or mitigation window. She provided numerous examples of programmes, highlighting the Sustainable Energy Financing Facilities (SEFFs) launched by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Universal Green Energy Access Programme (UGEAP) and the Sustainable Landscapes programme in Eastern Madagascar.

Benedict Libanda, Environment Investment Fund, Namibia, discussed a community-based resource management programme in Namibia, noting that even relatively small projects may be effective in improving the livelihoods of local people, building capacities and institutions.

Amal-Lee Amin, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), focused on the programme for sustainable energy alternatives for the Eastern Caribbean Countries (ECCs), providing details of the different stages of project development, and noting that geothermal energy, combined with solar energy and hydroelectric power, present significant potential to displace the use of oil in the region.

Hakima El Haité, Minister Delegate in Charge of Environment of the Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and Environment, Morocco, highlighted water, food security and energy as the priority sectors for Africa, and underscored the need for effective project implementation.

In the ensuing discussion, participants addressed, inter alia: funding towards direct-access projects; ways to enhance transparency and effectiveness, and improve access to civil society organizations; collaboration with other institutions and neighboring countries; ways to engage less bureaucratic and more effective institutions; and ways to promote country ownership of projects.

From L-R: Jiwoo Choi, GCF; Ousseynou Nakoulima, GCF; Ewen McDonald, GCF Co-Chair; Zaheer Fakir, GCF Co-Chair; and Javier Manzanares, GCF Executive Director ad interim

Javier Manzanares, GCF Executive Director ad interim, stressed the need to maximize the private sector’s engagement and build institutional capacities.

Hakima El Haité, Minister Delegate in Charge of Environment of the Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and Environment, Morocco, underscored that the application process should be simple, so that developing countries can easily access GCF funds in order to finance their adaptation projects.

Zaheer Fakir, GCF Co-Chair, stressed that business-as-usual is not working, arguing for a “business unusual” pathway.

Lifting the GCF ambition regarding funding projects, Ewen McDonald, GCF Co-Chair, called for numerous, quality proposals.

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Mapping and Understanding Mountains to Achieve the 2030 Agenda Presented by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and OIKOS

The session, moderated by Simon Rietbergen, FAO, focused on mountain frameworks in the context of climate change. He stressed that food security in mountain areas has decreased over the last decade.

Andrew Taber, Executive Director, Mountain Institute, said that mountains have an important economic role in tourism, mining and forestry, provide 60-80% of global freshwater, and shelter a quarter of global terrestrial biodiversity and forests. He noted mountains are recognized in 48 Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) and three targets under two Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Stressing that even though 40% of people vulnerable to food insecurity live in mountains and that mountains are not mentioned in SDG 2 (zero hunger), he recommended specifically assessing the role of mountains across all the SDGs.

Tilman Hertz, International Climate Initiative, underscored the importance of ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA). He said EbA is a no-regrets measure that delivers many benefits, and is mentioned in 100 NDCs. He described EbA approaches in Chile to reduce avalanches, and in Nepal to reduce erosion rates near roads. He noted that eco-safe roads become cost effective in 12 years due to reduced maintenance costs.

Eric Chavez Betancourt, President, OIKOS, presented on the case of vicuñas in Peru for ecosystem conservation, poverty reduction, development, adaptation and mitigation. He highlighted how, brought back from the brink of extinction, vicuñas provide an opportunity for lifting one million people in Peru out of poverty. Additionally, he noted that protecting vicuñas’ natural habitats, grasslands and wetlands provides key ecosystem services, such as water provision and carbon fixation. He called for Reduced Emissions from Avoided Degradation (READ) to be considered alongside REDD+.

Faya Ahmed, Guinea, noted climate change impacts in Guinea’s mountains, including disruptions in rainfall patterns and spread of diseases such as malaria. Ahmed stressed that those impacts are worsened by practices, such as unsustainable farming and forestry, and by the lack of local health services.

Charles Nyandiga, Small Grants Programme of the UN Development Programme and the Global Environment Facility (UNDP/GEF), underscored the central role of local communities in mountain conservation and adaptation strategies. He described examples of traditional crop usage to reverse agriculture degradation, agroforestry practices to reduce flooding and landslides, water management strategies to reduce water scarcity and ecosystem degradation, and ridge-to-reef strategies in Small Island Developing States (SIDS). He stressed that adopting improved energy cooking systems can significantly reduce pressure on mountain ecosystems.

In the discussion, participants considered the importance of both EbA and community-based approaches.

From L-R: Charles Nyandiga, UNDP/GEF Small Grants Programme; Eric Chavez Betancourt, President, OIKOS; Simon Rietbergen, FAO; Andrew Taber, Executive Director, Mountain Institute; and Tilman Hertz, International Climate Initiative

Eric Chavez Betancourt, President, OIKOS, noted that traditional activities, such as rounding up vicuñas, help to maintain the cultural identity of communities.

Faya Ahmed, Guinea, presented on the impacts of climate change in Mont Gangan, Guinea.

Andrew Taber, as Chair of the Mountain Partnership, noted that the Mountain Partnership includes 57 governments and more than 280 organizations.

Tilman Hertz, International Climate Initiative, said the Initiative had funded 500 projects for a total of €1.7 billion.

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Enhancing Transparency of Mitigation and Finance: Lessons from ExperiencePresented by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

Introduced by Jacob Werksman, DG-CLIMA, European Commission (EC), the event was moderated by Jane Ellis, OECD, and focused on enhancing the transparency of climate mitigation and finance.

Gregory Briner, OECD, compared the diversity of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) to the Olympic disciplines, noting that there is not a single metric to measure the performance of all athletes. He underscored that often information is missing from NDCs, such as models and assumptions for business-as-usual (BAU) scenarios, or gross domestic product (GDP) and population projections in energy intensity goals.

Sara Moarif, International Energy Agency (IEA), emphasized the importance of guidelines both for reporting and for reviewing. She said review and analysis should be objective, technical and focus on what is most useful to parties. She noted that, while review and analysis are resource-intensive, the benefits are very high.

Jane Ellis, OECD, underscored the gaps in information regarding climate change finance, particularly private finance mobilized by public finance. She emphasized the need to ensure comparability of climate finance accounting methodologies, and noted that collective reporting of climate finance mobilized could improve the comprehensiveness and comparability of data.

Cristina Urrutia, Peru, highlighted the country’s Inforcarbon tool, which provides reporting guidelines and emission factors for the different sectors in the country. She noted the tool has improved access and retention of information by the government. She noted the technical review process has increased the sense of relevance.

Noting the lack of capacity in African countries, Alpha Kaloga, African Group, said the transparency framework should be fit for purpose. He highlighted the lack of information sharing within the recipient countries, and suggested that donors share information on climate finance with a national focal point.

Yamil Bonduki, UN Development Programme (UNDP), said that transparency of NDCs has to be considered from the beginning of the process, rather than as an afterthought. He underscored the importance of understanding flows by sector at the national and international levels. Noting UNDP research on climate finance allocation over the years, he underlined the need for more understanding on how it affects the private sector. Bonduki said having a more transparent system for finance will attract international support, as donors are reassured the resources create the intended impact.

In the ensuing discussion, participants discussed the role of multilateral institutions in incentivizing private investment, the need for annual data for modelers, capacity building at the sectoral level, domestic tracking of climate finance, and the role of civil society in tracking finance.

From L-R: Jane Ellis, OECD; Sara Moarif, IEA; Gregory Briner, OECD; Cristina Urrutia, Peru; Alpha Kaloga, African Group; and Yamil Bonduki, UNDP

Jacob Werksman, DG-CLIMA, EC, underscored the importance of transparency in mitigation and climate finance reporting.

Gregory Briner, OECD, highlighted the importance of modalities, procedures and guidelines for transparency.

Alpha Kaloga, African Group, supported the idea of a gatekeeper to centralize information on climate finance at the national level.

Jane Ellis, OECD, noted that the Paris Agreement has an inconsistency on climate finance reporting provisions.

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Climate Change and Energy Transition in the Mediterranean Region: Opportunities Through Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) CooperationPresented by Observatoire Méditerranéen de l'Energie (OME) and Universitat Politécnica de Catalunya (UPC)

This event, moderated by Houda Allal, General Director, OME, analyzed the Mediterranean basin countries’ NDCs and provided recommendations for achieving a low-carbon energy transition.

Bruno Lescoeur, Chairman, OME, and Josep Xercavins, UPC, provided opening remarks. Lescoeur underscored the need for a low-carbon energy transition, stating that, without a drastic change in energy policy, energy emissions will continue to increase.

Anne-France Didier, Director, Plan Bleu, provided an overview of the Barcelona Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean, noting the recently adopted strategies to address sustainable development and climate change under the Convention.

On the Mediterranean NDCs, Xercavins said there is a large gap between the aggregate effect of the current NDCs and the level of compromises required to achieve the 2°C goal under the Paris Agreement. Olga Alcaraz, UPC, said that it is necessary to translate NDCs’ modelling to the country level to understand fully the levels of ambition.

Lisa Guarrera, OME, presented on whether the NDC scenarios are setting us on the desired climate path. She said that, while it is clear that the North Mediterranean has embarked on a clear energy transition pathway in its NDCs, the South Mediterranean could be more ambitious.

François Gréaume, French Environment and Energy Management Agency, highlighted key aspects of a successful energy transition, including: development of local capacities; programme implementation in priority sectors like energy, transport and agriculture; and engaging all actors in the energy transition.

Amine Homman, ENGIE, then moderated a roundtable discussion. Mohamed El Amrani, Fédération de l’Energie, Morocco, said that Morocco is committed to achieving its NDC, having allocated over US$70 million to transitioning to clean energy. Abdelali Dakkina, National Agency for Energy Efficiency, Morocco, drew attention to the huge energy efficiency potential, which could take Morocco halfway to achieving its emissions reduction goal.

Silvia Pariente-David, Center for Mediterranean Integration, noted that none of the NDCs from the Mediterranean reflect the need for better market integration to reduce emissions. She stressed the huge potential for renewables and called on the region to transition directly to natural gas. Amado Gil, Gas Natural Fenosa (GNF), stressed the role of natural gas in energy efficiency.

In the discussion, participants considered the need to balance between energy supply and demand in the region, and the commitment of gas companies to changing the fossil fuel narrative.

From L-R: Josep Xercavins, UPC; Bruno Lescoeur, Chairman, OME; and Houda Allal, General Director, OME.

Josep Xercavins, UPC, underscored the need for references in order to assess if a country is on track for the 2°C global goal and that, with equity and justice, it is possible to translate the global goal reference to the Mediterranean region.

Bruno Lescoeur, Chairman, OME, underlined the urgent need to profile and rethink how energy is produced, used and transformed in order to address climate change in the context of NDCs.

Houda Allal, General Director, OME, said less energy consumption is not necessarily a reduction in energy use but an avoidance of emissions.

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Improving Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs): Ecovillage Development, Energy Access and Zero-Carbon Societies in Africa, Asia and the European Union (EU)Presented by the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN), the International Network for Sustainable Energy (INFORSE) and the Nordic Folkecenter for Renewable Energy (NFVE)

This side event, co-moderated by Kosha Anja Joubert, Executive Director, GEN, Gunnar Boye Olesen, INFORSE, and Preben Maegaard, Executive Director, NFVE, focused on ways through which local solutions may lead to ambitious NDCs, provide energy access and improve livelihoods.

Highlighting intentional, traditional and urban ecovillages, and noting that GEN reaches out to 100,000 communities worldwide, Joubert urged considering new concepts of wealth, celebrating human culture and rebuilding solidarity in local communities.

Tim Clarke, European Network for Community-Led Initiatives on Climate Change and Sustainability (ECOLISE), underscored social inclusion, local ownership, employment generation, and access to untapped resources and indigenous knowledge.

Focusing on children, Linda Kabaira, GEN-Africa, Zimbabwe, presented on efforts to build resilience in a changing climate by greening schools. Highlighting that his country has negative net carbon emissions, Chencho Norbu, National Environment Commission Secretariat (NECS), Bhutan, presented national policies pursuing, inter alia, organic farming.

Kavita Shriya Myles, INFORSE South Asia, discussed a pro-poor approach to universal clean energy access and a compassionate approach to improving livelihoods. Describing ecovillage development (EVD) as a climate solution, Dumindu Herath, Integrated Development Association (IDEA), Sri Lanka, underscored national initiatives, including the development of 10,000 climate-smart villages.

Shovana Maharjan, Centre for Rural Technology (CRT), Nepal, discussed EVD contribution to achieving national and international goals and targets, highlighting capacity building and awareness-raising campaigns. Mohammad Mahmodul Hasan, Grameen Shakti, Bangladesh, addressed existing mitigation solutions at the national level, including the solar home electricity programme for off-grid villages, improved cooking stoves, biogas plants and organic farming. Underscoring the transboundary, cross-sectional and cross-cutting nature of climate change, Santosh Patnaik, Climate Action Network (CAN) South Asia, urged for regional cooperation to overcome climate vulnerabilities.

Maegaard stressed that, by 2030, 58% of all new electricity generation capacity will be based on renewables. Stressing that the science behind the Paris Agreement clearly recognizes the need for net Zero-Carbon emissions, Paul Allen, Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT), UK, identified food, transport, buildings and energy as the four key sectors, and underscored that by "breaking existing climate silence", people forge a collective identity.

Highlighting community power for the transition to 100% renewable energy, Leire Gorroño Albizu, NFVE, presented the case study of Hvide Sande in Denmark, where the installation of three community-owned wind turbines led to economic stability and development, job creation and self-sufficiency.

During discussions, participants addressed, among others: emissions related to meat consumption; reduction in beef consumption and potential effects for communities that are based on animal husbandry; ways to overcome water scarcity problems; inclusiveness under mitigation; and ways to connect the regional, national and international levels.

From L-R: Chencho Norbu, NECS, Bhutan; Tim Clarke, ECOLISE; Kosha Anja Joubert, Executive Director, GEN; and Linda Kabaira, GEN-Africa, Zimbabwe

Highlighting food sovereignty, Linda Kabaira, GEN-Africa, Zimbabwe, cried on behalf of the children: “we are not too young to be involved.”

Calling for rebuilding solidarity and sharing, Kosha Anja Joubert, Executive Director, GEN, stressed that there are no solutions at the national level; “we are in one boat.”

From L-R: Shovana Maharjan, CRT, Nepal; Mohammad Mahmodul Hasan, Grameen Shakti, Bangladesh; Gunnar Boye Olesen, INFORSE; Kavita Myles, INFORSE South Asia; Dumindu Herath, IDEA, Sri Lanka; and Santosh Patnaik, CAN South Asia

Mohammad Mahmodul Hasan, Grameen Shakti, Bangladesh, noted that a model for EVD will be submitted as a project proposal to the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

Kavita Shriya Myles, INFORSE South Asia, highlighted gender mainstreaming income generation, capacity building and equitable access to resources.

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