technologyupdate15 July 2016: The past weeks’ activities under and outside the UNFCCC sought to build developing countries’ capacity on climate change adaptation, disaster risk management (DRM) and other climate change-related issues, and to identify additional opportunities with regard to capacity building, and technology development and transfer.

The recent developments reported here contribute to the implementation of a number of sustainable development goals (SDGs), including, in particular, SDG 13 (Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts), 15 (Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss) and 7 (Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all).

Technology Mechanism Looks Back at 20 Years of Technological Assistance; CTCN Focuses on Energy Efficiency, Cooling and Heating, Holds NDE Fora

The policy branch of the UNFCCC’s Technology Mechanism, the Technology Executive Committee (TEC), issued a publication titled ‘Technology and the UNFCCC: Building the foundation for sustainable development.’ The publication explains how the UNFCCC has supported developing countries in building the foundation for sustainable development through technology development and transfer activities. [Technology and the UNFCCC: Building the Foundation for Sustainable Development] [Publication Landing Page] [UNFCCC Press Release] [CTCN Press Release]

During the ‘Agricultural Demand Side Management: Adopting Technologies to Boost Efficiencies’ workshop, which took place in New Delhi, India, on 13 June 2016, the implementation arm of the Technology Mechanism – the Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN) – presented opportunities, issues and challenges for energy efficiency in the agricultural sector in India, and outlined support for energy efficiency and innovative financing in the European Union (EU). [CTCN Press Release]

The CTCN introduced its activities at the Green Cooling Africa Week, convened by the German International Cooperation Agency (GIZ) in Centurion, South Africa, from 7-10 June 2016.

According to the CTCN, the refrigeration and air-conditioning (RAC) sector is responsible for a significant share of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions due to low efficiency levels and high leakage rates of refrigerant gases with high global warming potential (GWP). This share is expected to increase to 30% by 2030. Africa’s growing demand for air conditioning necessitates the introduction and dissemination of green cooling technologies.

The CTCN supports Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius and Namibia within the framework of the Green Cooling Africa Initiative (GCAI). [CTCN Press Release] [CTCN GCAI Webpage]

Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina became the first countries in Central Asia and Eastern Europe to engage in climate technology transfer with the Technology Mechanism.

Bosnia and Herzegovina’s second largest city Banja Luka requested help from the CTCN to modernize its district heating system with the support of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). The project is expected to save up to 20,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year and €4.5 million in heating costs.

With the CTCN’s assistance, Albania is developing the first local-level plan for achieving energy efficiency and for providing training to enhance understanding of national energy plans among regional stakeholders.

The CTCN Regional Forum for National Designated Entities (NDEs) in Central Asia and Eastern Europe, co-hosted by the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC), held in Almaty, Kazakhstan, from 15-16 June 2016, aimed to identify additional technology transfer opportunities in the region in a broad range of sectors, including agriculture, energy, industry and transport.

NDEs are the focal points, through which developing countries submit requests for assistance. [CTCN Press Release]

The CTCN Regional Forum for NDEs in Asia, held in Bangkok, Thailand, from 11-13 July 2016, promoted information exchange and capacity building on climate technologies and finance. [CTCN Press Release]

UNFCCC Parties to Submit Views on Paris Committee on Capacity-building; Training Activities Build Capacity on DRR, Combating Desertification

The UNFCCC Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) invited submissions on the annual focus area or theme for the Paris Committee on Capacity-building for 2017, and on which representatives of the bodies established under the Convention and of the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism should be invited to the first meeting of the Paris Committee on Capacity-building. Submissions are to be received by 29 August 2016.

Submitted views will be considered at the SBI’s 45th meeting in November 2016, in order for the SBI to be able to make a recommendation on this matter for consideration and adoption by the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 22) to the UNFCCC. [UNFCCC Document FCCC/SBI/2016/L.24: Terms of Reference for the Paris Committee on Capacity-building: Draft Conclusions Proposed by the Chair] [Negotiations on Capacity Building Webpage]

A number of training activities on a broad range of topics, including climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction (DRR) and combating desertification, took place over the past several weeks.

The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), with support from the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), conducted a DRR training for members of the Parliamentarians Network for Resilience to Disasters in Central Africa (REPARC) in São Tomé and Príncipe from 13-17 June 2016. The event was part of the EU-funded programme on Building Disaster Resilience to Natural Hazards in Sub-Saharan Africa Regions, Countries and Communities, which was launched in 2015.

Established in October 2015 to address DRR and climate change issues in the ECCAS, the REPARC consortium is composed of lawmakers from Burundi, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and São Tomé and Príncipe.

The ECCAS consists of 11 member States: Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Rwanda. [UNISDR Press Release] [ECCAS Website] [Sendai Framework for DRR]

The CTCN held both in-person and virtual training on climate change adaptation and reducing deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD+), among others.

‘International Combating Desertification Training’ was held in Konya, Mersin and Adana, Turkey, from 30 May to 5 June 2016.

The training was part of the Ankara Initiative launched at the 12th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 12) to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The Initiative supports the sustainable development agenda by leveraging the lessons learned from Turkey’s experience with and approaches to land management. [CTCN Press Release on Online Course on Climate Change Adaptation] [CTCN Press Release on REDD+ Training] [CTCN Press Release on Global Affairs Canada Webinar] [UNCCD Press Release on Combating Desertification Training]

Looking Ahead

The UNFCCC released notifications to Parties and observers ahead of the 13th meeting of the TEC to be held in Bonn, Germany, from 6-9 September 2016. [UNFCCC Notification to Parties and Observer States] [UNFCCC Notification to UN organizations] [UNFCCC Notification to Admitted International Organizations] [UNFCCC Notification to Admitted Non-governmental Organizations]

Two training sessions on combating desertification under the Ankara Initiative will take place in August and October 2016. [UNCCD Press Release on Combating Desertification Regional Training in August 2016] [UNCCD Press Release on International Workshop ‘Meteorology, Sand and Dust Storm, Combating Desertification and Erosion’]