18 April 2016
February-April 2016 NAMA Update: NAMAs Receive Growing Attention as Implementation Tools Post-Paris
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Nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) by developing countries, first introduced in the UNFCCC Cancun Agreements, are becoming an increasingly important vehicle supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement, with significant co-benefits for the 2030 Agenda due to their alignment with national development strategies.

This update focuses on individual NAMAs, and related support, events and activities, for the period from mid-February 2016 to mid-April 2016.

feb_nama_update201615 April 2016: Nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) by developing countries, first introduced in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Cancun Agreements, are becoming an increasingly important vehicle supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement, with significant co-benefits for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development due to their alignment with national development strategies. This update focuses on individual NAMAs, and related support, events and activities, for the period from mid-February 2016 to mid-April 2016.

NAMAs are actions that reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions relative to business-as-usual (BAU) emissions in 2020 in developing countries. Being national mitigation actions, their implementation contributes to the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 13 (Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts), in particular, its target 13.2 (Integrate climate change measures into national policies, strategies and planning). NAMAs are prepared under the umbrella of a governmental initiative and are aligned with a country’s national development goals. The UNFCCC distinguishes between NAMAs at the national level, communicated by Parties through a formal submission, and individual NAMAs that can include projects, sectoral programmes or policies. NAMAs are supported by finance, technology and capacity building.

New NAMAs Registered, Gap between Support Requested and Offered Remains

On 15 April 2016, the UNFCCC NAMA Registry, which serves as a public depository of individual NAMAs and related support, displayed a total of: 61 NAMAs seeking support for preparation (up by one from 12 February 2016); 60 NAMAs seeking support for implementation (up by two); nine NAMAs for recognition (up by one); 18 entries on support for NAMAs; and 16 supported NAMAs. The registry is aimed at facilitating the matching of finance, technology and capacity-building support with NAMAs seeking international support, and at recognizing other NAMAs. [UNFCCC NAMA Registry]

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) DTU Partnership’s monthly NAMA Pipeline, which compiles a broader range of actions, displayed a total of 127 NAMAs (see 1 April update). The financing balance remained the same for the second month in a row: the total support requested for NAMAs, US$158 million, equaled to 2% of the total support requested, US$8.0 billion. [UNEP DTU NAMA Pipeline]

NAMA Preparation: Sierra Leone Calls for Resources

Individual NAMAs can receive support for both design and implementation. Sierra Leone registered a request for technical and financial support, at a total of US$150,000, for the preparation of a NAMA that will in parallel aim to transfer knowledge and strengthen national capacity. [UNFCCC NAMA Registry Entry]

The International Partnership on Mitigation and MRV launched an online course on NAMA development that explores the process from idea selection to implementation-ready NAMAs. [Mitigation Partnership e-learning Course]

A paper by the Mitigation Momentum project focuses on the issue of stakeholder engagement in NAMA development, stressing its importance for ensuring ownership and buy-in. Pointing to similarities with traditional development assistance programme where stakeholder engagement approaches have worked well, the paper highlights features that are characteristics of NAMAs. It also suggests that, since many NAMAs require cross-ministry coordination, current stakeholder engagement around them serves as a testing ground for full-scale implementation of both pre-2020 action and post-2020 nationally determined contributions (NDCs). [Mitigation Momentum Paper on NAMA Development]

NAMA Implementation: Georgia, Lao PDR and Peru Seek Support

In the period from mid-February to mid-April 2016, energy sector NAMAs dominated the news, with some developments announced in the transport and industry sectors. Georgia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) and Peru submitted NAMAs seeking support for implementation.

Energy Sector
After seeking implementation support for a rural household energy efficiency NAMA earlier in 2016, Georgia submitted a NAMA for energy efficient refurbishment in the country’s public building sector that is seeking US$24.5 million for implementation. The action will support readiness for the creation of regulatory structures for nation-wide energy-efficiency measures in the sector. It includes a pilot project to renovate key public buildings and government facilities, and testing of energy performance contracting through energy service companies (ESCOs). [UNEP DTU NAMA Pipeline] [UNFCCC NAMA Registry Entry]

Lao PDR registered a NAMA focusing on solar rural electrification that is seeking US$2.5 million in international support for implementation. A third of the country’s households remain without access to electricity, and the Government aims to decrease this number to 6% by 2020. This NAMA would therefore also support implementation of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 (Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all) in particular its target 7.1 (By 2030, ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services). Interventions under the NAMA will be prioritized according to the country’s socioeconomic development objectives. [UNEP DTU NAMA Pipeline] [UNFCCC NAMA Registry Entry]

NAMA News reported on Ghana’s NAMA on enhancing access to clean energy through establishment of market-based solutions, which aims to enable private-sector participation in clean energy manufacturing and distribution by establishing 28 ‘Energy Productivity Zones,’ and to support the creation of an enabling market environment for clean technology distribution through consumer finance. The development of the NAMA was supported by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) Low Emission Capacity Building (LECB) Programme. [NAMA News Article]

Uzbekistan submitted a solar energy NAMA for recognition. NAMAs that are funded unilaterally, by the country itself, can be registered under this category in the UNFCCC registry. The NAMA comprises a plan to construct six solar plants, develop local capabilities and technology, and undertake rural electrification projects, based on the Government’s roadmap for the development of solar energy. [UNEP DTU NAMA Pipeline] [UNFCCC NAMA Registry]

Transport and Industry Sectors
Peru’s sustainable urban transport NAMA, part of the country’s intended NDC (INDC) is seeking US$95 million in financial support for implementation. The NAMA is already receiving support from the NAMA Facility. Peru has also completed the development of a NAMA to transform the country’s cement industry, with the potential to cut total industry emissions by half. [UNFCCC NAMA Registry] [IISD RS December 2015 – February 2016 NAMA Update] [NAMA News Article on Peruvian Cement Industry]

The German-funded TRANSfer project, which supports transport sector NAMAs, reported on the development of guidelines for cycling infrastructure in Peru, progress made in the development of a NAMA on non-motorized transport and travel demand management in Colombia, and workshops on the improvement of vehicle standards in the public transport fleet in the Philippines. [TRANSfer News January/February 2016]

TRANSfer also released a reference document on measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) in the transport sector, which introduces the basic concepts of MRV of greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation actions, and explains the data needs for MRV, and the institutional and process-related details for establishing a MRV system in the sector. [TRANSfer Reference Document on MRV]

Financing: NAMA Facility Reports on Past and Future Activities

The NAMA Facility, funded by Germany, the UK, Denmark and the European Commission, reported on its activities in 2015, noting that total funding for the 2015 Call for NAMA Support Projects reached approximately €85 million. By the end of 2015, the Facility had five Support Projects under implementation, and four projects approved in 2015 (in Costa Rica, Indonesia, Chile and Peru) were expected to be under implementation in 2016. [NAMA Facility Annual Report 2015]

In 2016, the NAMA Facility expects to launch its fourth Call for NAMA Support Projects, with revised procedures for, inter alia, simplified access and strengthened linkage of NAMAs to INDCs. [NAMA Facility Outlook for 2016]

The NAMA Facility also launched publications focusing on lessons learned from: the assessment of the three Calls of the Facility; and the financing mechanisms proposed to the Facility so far. [NAMA Facility Factsheet on Assessment] [NAMA Facility Factsheet on Financial Mechanisms]

Linking NAMAs to Implementation of the Paris Agreement, SDGs

After the launch of the SDGs and the climate change agreement in Paris, the role of NAMAs in delivering mitigation outcomes that are in line with developing countries’ (I)NDCs and their national sustainable development plans and goals is receiving rising attention.

An opinion piece published by Mitigation Momentum and prepared by Ecofys presents the views of a group of government officials from ministries leading on NAMAs on the role of NAMAs in the implementation of the Paris Agreement in developing countries. The piece finds that: NAMAs are recognized as an important mitigation and development tool; the NAMA development process has built transferrable skills, but further support is needed; the Paris Agreement has made NAMAs even more relevant for developing countries; and accessing implementation finance remains the main challenge. [Ecofys Press Release] [Mitigation Momentum Opinion Piece]

An article by NAMA News argues that, in order to “effectively allow the world to transition to a low-carbon and resilient economy,” developing countries’ plans “can and must be supported by mechanisms such as [NAMAs].” The article argues that the interpretation by many actors of INDCs as an evolution of individual mitigation projects/activities under the clean development mechanism (CDM) and NAMAs is wrong. It explains that NDCs, as national development visions, under the Paris Agreement, provide the “much-needed context for individual and specific actions to be implemented.” The article notes that NAMAs receive explicit reference in approximately 40 countries’ INDCs and estimates that NAMAs will receive increasing attention as “need to identify and implement concrete action arises.” [NAMA News Article]

Focusing on Africa, another article by NAMA News draws attention to the opportunities for ambitious climate action with socio-economic benefits created by the Paris Agreement. Noting that a number of African INDCs include NAMAs as initiatives complementing national development policies, including in with regard to renewable energy, the article argues that NAMAs “can offer concrete opportunities to promote renewable energy in a holistic way, merging capacity building and institutional strengthening activities together with the implementation of renewable energy projects.” With an eye on supporting NDC implementation in Africa, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) is partnering with regional entities to raise awareness on the renewable energy elements of African INDCs and further refine these elements in preparation for their submission as NDCs under the Paris Agreement. [NAMA News Article]

On the linkages between NAMAs and SDGs, a video by the Mitigation Momentum project explains how NAMAs also contribute to sustainable development, including through improved health, air quality and energy security, and job creation. The video includes illustrative examples from NAMAs in Costa Rica’s coffee sector, Columbia’s transport and urban sectors, and the Gambia’s electricity sector, among others. [Mitigation Momentum Video]

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