UNDP Advances the Climate Change Agenda in Timor-Leste

26 February 2010: The UN Development Programme (UNDP) participated in a post-Copenhagen debriefing meeting on 23 February 2010, in Dili, Timor Leste, underlining its commitment to addressing climate change in Timor-Leste.

Pradeep Sharma, Acting Deputy Country Director of UNDP and Head of the Poverty Reduction and Environment Unit, outlined initiatives undertaken by UNDP, including the National Adaptation Plan of Action (NAPA), the Initial National Communication (INC) and the Capacity Development for Climate Change (supported by AusAID). On mitigation, Pradeep emphasized that Timor-Leste is largely “a victim not perpetrator,” and is therefore asking for assistance from  developed countries in the areas of technical support, technological transfer and capacity building.

Joao Mendes Goncalves, Minister for Economy and Development of Timor-Leste, provided feedback to the stakeholders from the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, and chaired a discussion on the country's preparedness to address climate change and take stock of the needs and capacities to promote resilience. He outlined elements of a coordinated, multi-sectoral Climate Change adaptation plan for Timor-Leste, including: improving agriculture to safeguard freshwater; implementing a conservation programme for forests, corals, mangroves and wetlands;  improving living conditions for the poor and most vulnerable; developing infrastructure ; improving disaster preparedness and reduction; and formulating an integrated Natural Resource Management Strategywith the help of UNDP, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). [UNDP Press Release]