Adaptation and Loss and Damage Update: COP 22 Preparations Pick Up Speed; Regions Enhance DRM Cooperation
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With the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 22) to the UNFCCC to be held in Marrakesh, Morocco, from 7-18 November 2016, less than three months away, preparations are underway.

The UNFCCC Secretariat has released a number of meeting documents, and Parties have been submitting their views on a range of issues, including the Nairobi Work Programme (NWP) on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change.

The outcomes of several upcoming September meetings will also feed into the Marrakesh climate change conference.

unisdrs_unfccc_pifs1 September 2016: With the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 22) to the UNFCCC to be held in Marrakesh, Morocco, from 7-18 November 2016, less than three months away, preparations are underway. The UNFCCC Secretariat has released a number of meeting documents, and Parties have been submitting their views on a range of issues, including the Nairobi Work Programme (NWP) on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change. The outcomes of several upcoming September meetings will also feed into the Marrakesh Climate Change Conference.

Regional Cooperation on DRM Enhanced, Science and Technology Contribute to DRR Efforts

Disaster risk management (DRM) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) featured prominently among the recent weeks’ events taking place in various parts of the globe, as the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) issued a warning that the rising global temperatures and drought conditions affecting many of the world’s regions could result in more frequent and more destructive wildfires. [UNISDR Press Release] [UN Press Release]

In other UNISDR news, the Office and its partners convened the first Asian Science and Technology Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction (ASTCDRR) in Bangkok, Thailand, from 23-24 August 2016. Conference participants discussed ways in which applied science and technology can strengthen the implementation of the Sendai Framework on DRR. [ASTCDRR UNISDR Webpage] [UNISDR Press Release] [ASTCDRR Conference Flyer] [Sendai Framework for DRR]

DRR was also caught the attention of the BRICS group of countries (Brazil, the Russian Federation, India, China and South Africa) at a recent meeting. The Second Meeting of the BRICS Ministers for Disaster Management held in Udaipur, India, from 22-23 August 2016, issued the Udaipur Declaration of BRICS Ministers for Disaster Management. The Ministers established a Joint Task Force on DRM for “regular dialogue, exchange, mutual support and collaboration” among their countries. In their declaration, the Ministers, inter alia: commit to reduce disaster and climate-related risks through integration of DRM measures into sustainable development; promote cooperation in developing and disseminating innovative DRM solutions; and promote investments in DRM and climate change adaptation. [Udaipur Declaration of BRICS Ministers for Disaster Management] [UNISDR Press Release]

Climate change and DRM was one of the main topics addressed by the first standing meeting of Pacific Islands Forum Foreign Ministers convened at the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) in Suva, Fiji, on 12 August 2016. The ministers considered ways to enhance regional cooperation on: DRM; responding to the adverse effects of climate change; and simplified access to climate finance. [PIFS Press Release]

Disaster resilience in the Pacific was also the focus of a World Bank ‘Climate and Disaster Resilience’ report released as part of its Pacific Possible series. The report highlights the need for countries in the region to better incorporate climate and DRM into planning and development, and proposes priority investments and policies to enhance resilience up to 2040.

The Pacific Possible series highlights transformative opportunities that exist for the region over the next 25 years and identifies the Pacific island States’ challenges requiring urgent action. [Climate and Disaster Resilience] [World Bank Press Release]

In Latin America, the Caribbean Development Bank (CBD) approved funding for a study on approaches for mainstreaming climate resilience into the road transport sector. The study will address damage to the road infrastructure in Caribbean countries by natural hazard events and potential loss of roads to the rising sea levels. [CBD Press Release]

UNFCCC Developments in the Run-up to Marrakesh

In preparation for COP 22, the UNFCCC Secretariat published reports on: the workshop on the identification of adaptation measures, taking into account the diversity of the agricultural systems, indigenous knowledge systems and the differences in scale, as well as possible co-benefits and sharing experiences in research and development and on-the-ground activities, including socioeconomic, environmental and gender aspects (FCCC/SBSTA/2016/INF.5); and the workshop on the identification and assessment of agricultural practices and technologies to enhance productivity in a sustainable manner, food security and resilience, considering the differences in agroecological zones and farming systems, such as different grassland and cropland practices and systems (FCCC/SBSTA/2016/INF.6). [Workshop on the Identification of Adaptation Measures, Taking Into Account the Diversity of the Agricultural Systems, Indigenous Knowledge Systems and the Differences in Scale as Well as Possible Co-benefits and Sharing Experiences in Research and Development and On-the-Ground Activities, Including Socioeconomic, Environmental and Gender Aspects] [Workshop on the Identification and Assessment of Agricultural Practices and Technologies to Enhance Productivity in a Sustainable Manner, Food Security and Resilience, Considering the Differences in Agroecological Zones and Farming Systems, Such as Different Grassland and Cropland Practices and Systems]

The 28 August 2016 deadline has passed for submissions on the NWP relating to information on recent work in the area of climate impacts on human health, including changes in the geographical distribution of diseases; new and emerging health issues, including tropical diseases and their impacts on social and economic structures, as well as the issues of malnutrition, waterborne diseases, vector-borne diseases and disaster impacts; and the effects of climate change. Afghanistan, Macedonia, Indonesia, Guatemala, Mexico, Pakistan and Serbia submitted their views.

Parties and stakeholders are also expected, by 30 September 2016, to respond to a call for submissions on the Adaptation Committee (AC) and Least Developed Countries Expert Group (LEG) mandates stemming from decision 1/CP.21. [UNFCCC Submissions Portal]

Upcoming Meetings to Look For

A number of upcoming meetings are expected to produce outcomes relevant for the climate change negotiations in Marrakesh. The list below contains a few September 2016 highlights:

  • 2016 Forum of the Standing Committee on Finance: The 2016 Forum of the Standing Committee on Finance themed ‘Financial instruments that address the risks of loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change’ will take place in Manila, the Philippines, from 5-6 September 2016. [2016 Forum of the Standing Committee on Finance Webpage]
  • AC10: The tenth meeting of the Adaptation Committee (AC10) will convene in Bonn, Germany, from 13-16 September 2016. [AC10 Meeting Webpage]
  • Expert Group on non-economic losses (NELs): The first meeting of the Expert Group on NELs established by the ExCom in April 2016 will take place in Bonn, Germany, from 15-16 September 2016. [Expert Group on NELs Meeting Webpage]
  • ExCom 4: The fourth meeting of the Executive Committee (ExCom) of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage (WIM) will be held in Bonn, Germany, from 19-23 September 2016. [ExCom 4 Meeting Webpage]

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