Freshwater

Event: Sixth Special Session of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN) [viewed]

The sixth special session of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN) will address the theme 'Agenda 2030 and Paris Agreement: From policy to implementation in Africa'. The session opens with a two-day meeting of the expert group, followed by the ministerial segment on 18 and 19 April 2016. The objective of the meeting is to provide an opportunity for ministers and experts to deliberate on how to move forward with the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well as to assess the implications for Africa of the Paris agreement on Climate Change, especially in relation to the swift implementation of the African initiatives on Renewable Energy and Adaptation. Established in December 1985 following a conference of African ministers of environment held in Cairo, Egypt, AMCEN's mandate includes advocating for environmental protection in Africa and ensuring that: basic human needs are met adequately and in a sustainable manner; social and economic development is realized at all levels; and agricultural activities and practices meet the food security needs of the region. Regular sessions of AMCEN have been convened every second year since its inception. In addition, several special sessions have been convened in between regular sessions to consider specific issues of concern.  

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Banks Pledge US$7 Billion for Clean Energy, World Bank Adopts Climate Change Action Plan [viewed]

bloomberg_wbg7 April 2016: A number of private banks and the World Bank Group (WBG) have announced initiatives that will contribute to implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change, which was adopted in December 2015, as well as various Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). By pledging US$7 billion, a group of eight banks and investors have joined the Bank of America's initiative aimed at stimulating US$10 billion for investments in clean energy and sustainable development. For its part, the WBG has announced its Climate Change Action Plan, which aims to support countries in delivering on their national climate plans, also referred to as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the UNFCCC, and sets ambitious targets for 2020 in high-impact areas, including clean energy, green transport, climate-smart agriculture and urban resilience.

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Adaptation and Loss and Damage Update: Adaptation Committee and LDC Expert Group Begin Work under Paris Mandate, Climate Change Adaptation, DRR and Sustainable Development Interlinkages Come to the Fore [viewed]

unfccc_unu_undp_une-_wcmc9 April 2016: Alongside the long-term goal of limiting temperature increase to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100, the Paris Agreement on climate change includes a long-term adaptation goal, namely that of "enhancing adaptive capacity, strengthening resilience and reducing vulnerability to climate change, with a view to contributing to sustainable development and ensuring an adequate adaptation response in the context of the temperature goal." Furthermore, the vast majority of national climate plans submitted in advance of Paris (or Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)) included descriptions of countries' adaptation goals, priorities, actions and needs. This Adaptation Update is the first in a series that aims to track the implementation of the adaptation component of these INDCs, and progress towards the long-term adaptation goal of the Paris Agreement. The activities reported in this Update also contribute to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially SDG 13 (Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts), as well as SDG 1 (End poverty in all its forms everywhere), SDG 5 (Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls) and SDG 10 (Reduce inequality within and among countries).

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World Bank and GFDRR, UN-Habitat and UfM to Collaborate on Sustainable Urban Development [viewed]

world_bank_new8 April 2016: Two partnerships related to resilient urban development have been recently been unveiled. The World Bank Group and the Global Facility for Disaster Risk Reduction (GFDRR) have announced a partnership that will strengthen building regulation for disaster resilience in vulnerable countries, by improving implementation and compliance through the 'Building Regulation for Resilience: Managing Risks for Safer Cities' program. For their part, UN-Habitat and the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) have agreed to cooperate on actions aimed at achieving socially and environmentally sustainable urban development in the Mediterranean region. These developments will help achieve Sustainable Development Goal 11 (Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable).

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LAC Environment Ministers Agree to Cooperate on Climate Change, SDGs, Chemicals [viewed]

UNEP31 March 2016: At a regional forum held in preparation for the Second UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-2), environment ministers from Latin American and Caribbean countries agreed on arrangements for cooperation on climate, air quality, and chemicals and waste. They also called for fast, ambitious and integrated action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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Adapting to Climate Challenges, Indigenous Mountain Farmers Exchange Seeds and Traditional Practices [viewed]

iied_mp30 March 2016: A Tajikistan workshop with indigenous mountain farmers from 10 countries endorsed the 'Tuggoz Declaration on Climate Change and Mountain Indigenous Peoples,' which calls for protecting indigenous farming systems and landscapes through the legal recognition of Biocultural Heritage Territories. The declaration calls for indigenous peoples' rights to land, natural resources; for traditional knowledge to be fully respected in all mitigation and adaptation policies and programmes; and for the full and effective implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

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Global Methane Forum, Related Events Explore Methane Abatement Strategies [viewed]

global_methane_forum1 April 2016: The Global Methane Initiative (GMI) and the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) co-hosted the Global Methane Forum, which focused on international methane reduction, highlighting methane reduction technologies, policies and opportunities, and addressing finance issues. The Forum was directly followed by the CCAC second annual Science Policy Dialogue on Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCPs), the CCAC Municipal Solid Waste Initiative Workshop and the CCAC Working Group Meeting.

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2016 Global Food Policy Report Explores Contributions of Food Systems to SDG Implementation [viewed]

Ifpri31 March 2016: The '2016 Global Food Policy Report: How we Feed the World is Unsustainable' of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) analyzes food policy developments in 2015, assesses challenges and opportunities for the coming year, and investigates the role of food systems in achieving multiple Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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WMO Highlights Record Temperature, Droughts and Extremes on World Meteorological Day [viewed]

WMO23 March 2016: The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) released its Statement on the Status of the Climate in 2015, ahead of the World Meteorological Day. The Statement indicates that 2015 broke records in terms of temperatures, heatwaves, rainfall, drought and tropical cyclones, and that this trend is expected to continue in 2016. The theme of World Meteorological Day 2016, which was observed on 23 March, was 'Hotter, drier, wetter. Face the Future,' in order to highlight climate challenges and the path towards climate-resilient societies.

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Guest Article #141: Interview with Mario Boccucci, Head of the UN-REDD Programme Secretariat [viewed]

To mark the occasion of the International Day of Forests, celebrated annually on 21 March, IISD RS conducted an interview with Mario Boccucci, Head of the UN collaborative initiative on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (UN-REDD) Programme.

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