ENBOTS selected side events coverage for 8 November 2017



The following events were covered by IISD Reporting Services on Wednesday, 8 November 2017:

IISD Reporting Services, through its Earth Negotiations Bulletin on the Side (ENBOTS) Meeting Coverage, will provide daily web coverage from selected side events at the UN Climate Change Conference - November 2017.

Photos by IISD/ENB | Ángeles Estrada and Herman Njoroge Chege
For photo reprint permissions, please follow instructions at our Attribution Regulations for Meeting Photo Usage Page.

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in Addressing Marine and Coastal Zone Management in the Red Sea and Arabian GulfPresented by the Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (PERSGA)

This session, moderated by Ziad Abu Ghararah, Secretary General, PERSGA, showcased national-regional collaborative efforts for applying ecosystem approaches in the implementation of NDCs. Participants considered examples of marine and coastal zone management measures in the region, and highlighted ways through which PERSGA supports its member states in implementing ecosystem-based conservation measures.

Ahmed Khalil, PERSGA, explained that his organization focuses on the conservation of the marine environment in the region; and pointed to a recent agreement with the Islamic Development Bank to cooperate on providing support for ecosystem-based management projects. 

Islam Taha Mohamed, PERSGA, pointed to various web-based tools, such as an environmental sensitivity database, pollution load and oil trajectory models, and an integrated regional system on fisheries, which enhances knowledge exchange among countries in the Red Sea region. 

Axel Michaelowa, Managing Director, Perspectives GmbH, focused on blue carbon to, inter alia, delineate methodological approaches to measuring adaptation benefits, building on indicators of “saved wealth” and “saved health.” 

Christian Voolstra, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), outlined activities at KAUST, particularly the Red Sea Research Center on ocean science and the blue economy in Saudi Arabia. He described the Red Sea as KAUST’s “largest laboratory,” characterized by deep, warm water, a lack of fresh water input, nutrient poor and oxygen deficient. He said these extreme conditions make it a “model ocean of the future.” Highlighting the blue economy as the way forward, he outlined key focus areas for KAUST, including conservation and restoration of mangrove, seagrasses and saltmarsh ecosystems. On coral bleaching, he explained that this phenomena is regional in scope, with the northern Red Sea hardly experiencing any bleaching, which provides a window of opportunity to study coral reef resilience. 

Daniele Daffonchio, KAUST, discussed KAUST’s work on: the preservation of coastal intertidal ecosystems; ecological connectivity; Red Sea mangroves mapping; Red Sea blue carbon sequestration and stocks; and mangrove microbiomes. 

Khaled Abdullah Al-Abdulkader, Saudi Aramco, highlighted his company’s experience in marine environmental protection and research in collaboration with KAUST. He highlighted: a management framework for fisheries resources in the Gulf; mangrove transplantation efforts, which resulted in two million trees being planted; and the Aramco Biodiversity Park, as an example of the company’s engagement in environmental conservation.

L-R: Khaled Abdullah Al-Abdulkader, Saudi Aramco; Daniele Daffonchio, KAUST; Christian Voolstra, KAUST; Ziad Abu Ghararah, PERSGA; Ahmed Khalil, PERSGA; Islam Taha Mohamed, PERSGA; and Axel Michaelowa, Perspectives GmbH

Christian Voolstra, KAUST, outlined activities at KAUST, particularly the Red Sea Research Center on ocean science and the blue economy in Saudi Arabia.

Ziad Abu Ghararah, Secretary General, PERSGA, moderated the session.


Axel Michaelowa, Managing Director, Perspectives GmbH, said the most effective way to harness the potential of blue carbon is to conserve existing mangrove forests and seagrass beds rather than opt for costly restoration measures.

Daniele Daffonchio, KAUST, discussed the preservation of coastal resources in the Red Sea.

Ahmed Khalil, PERSGA, pointed to the Red Sea’s great richness in marine biodiversity, including corals and marine mammals such as dugongs.

Islam Taha Mohamed, PERSGA, illustrated the importance of web-based tools in providing a knowledge base for evidence-based conservation measures.

Khaled Abdullah Al-Abdulkader, Saudi Aramco, highlighted his company’s experience in marine environment protection and research in collaboration with KAUST.




More Information:

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) Implementation in Small Island Developing States (SIDS): Linking Mitigation and Adaptation Efforts for Sustainable DevelopmentPresented by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB)

This session, moderated by Vera Scholz, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), centered on examples of cross-sectoral cooperation that foster linkages between mitigation and adaptation action on the ground. Participants discussed, inter alia, financial and capacity building needs SIDS, and the need to move to long-term, climate-smart investments.

Pointing to the special responsibility of G20 countries to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Jochen Flasbarth, State Secretary, BMUB, praised SIDS for making ambitious mitigation pledges in their NDCs. He further pointed to the long-standing partnership between Germany and SIDS, highlighting cooperation on political approaches such as supporting the 1.5ºC goal, and on technical cooperation such as through the International Climate Initiative

Bruce Kijiner, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Marshall Islands, highlighted the good progress his country has made in NDC implementation, especially in relation to increasing solar energy capacity and addressing questions of energy efficiency. 

Trevor Thompson, Grenada, emphasized the importance of legislative instruments to open the energy market to competition and foster renewable energy production, and pointed to the momentum created by the reestablishment of the National Climate Change Committee. 

Soenke Kreft, Executive Director, Munich Climate Insurance Initiative (MCII), recalled his organization’s mission to find tangible solutions for unavoidable climate change impacts, and highlighted that it successfully brought insurance products to two Caribbean countries, with others being close to approval.

Karsten Sach, Germany, described the consultation process that led to the adoption of his country’s Climate Action Plan 2050 and underlined the importance of opening up institutions to stakeholder input in designing decarbonization pathways.

Espen Ronneberg, Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), emphasized SPREP’s role as a regional organization providing technical support for national measures, including the preparation of national communications and project proposals to the Green Climate Fund and the Adaptation Fund.

In the ensuing discussion, participants discussed, inter alia: the potential for regulatory frameworks at the regional level to accelerate and efficiently foster the uptake of climate friendly technology at the national level; the importance of stakeholder inclusion and ownership of solutions by local communities; and the potential of fiscal reforms, especially on fossil fuel subsidies, to achieve transformation. 

L-R: Vera Scholz, GIZ; Bruce Kijiner, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Marshall Islands; Karsten Sach, Germany; Soenke Kreft, Executive Director, MCII; Trevor Thompson, Grenada; and Espen Ronneberg, SPREP

Soenke Kreft, Executive Director, MCII, pointed to the growing demand for climate risk insurance products and highlighted that a significant number of NDCs mention such schemes.

Karsten Sach, Germany, underlined the need for policy coherence across all sectors to achieve a deep transformation.

During the discussion, a representative of Green Budget Europe indicated that the United Nations Office for Sustainable Development provides training workshops on fiscal policy reform.

Trevor Thompson, Grenada, highlighted the need for capacity building to ensure that local communities have the skills to maintain technologies that have been installed with international support.

Vera Scholz, GIZ, and Bruce Kijiner, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Marshall Islands

Espen Ronneberg, SPREP, emphasized the need to adapt climate solutions to the small scale of island economies.

More Information:

Integrated Observations for Mitigation and Adaptation & Practical Support to PartiesPresented by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), the Group on Earth Observation (GEO) and the Remote Sensing Technology Center of Japan (RESTEC)

This session, moderated by Stephen Briggs, GCOS Steering Committee, centered on the role of new technology in supporting parties to mitigate and adapt to climate change, including through access to climate observations, data records and information sharing.
In his opening remarks, Andrea Tilche, European Commission, explained that GEO is a system improving open access to and interoperability of Earth observations, fulfilling efforts to enhance climate data across the world. 

Paul Becker, Deutscher Wetterdienst (DWD), discussed the national implementation of GEO and GCOS activities in Germany. He emphasized that these tools can support the implementation of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) and highlighted: learning opportunities; improvement of national policies and data sharing; and GEO’s contribution to the Global Forest Observations Initiative.  

Jouni Heiskanen, Integrated Carbon Observation System (ICOS), spoke on GHG sinks, natural carbon cycles, and how fossil fuel emissions affect these natural processes. He argued that ICOS enhances data at the regional level, and noted its overarching goal of coordinating observations globally. 

Kiyoto Tanabe, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), spoke on the “2019 Refinement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National GHG Inventories.” Focusing on satellite data, he noted efforts of over 200 scientists working on the refinement of the Guidelines with regards to improving verification methods, especially on Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU). 

Masanobu Kimura, Japan, spoke on how satellite data can support national climate mitigation planning. He noted that the GHG Observing Satellite (GOSAT) allows higher accuracy in detecting anthropogenic emissions and explained that this tool can assist other parties in reporting progress on NDC implementation under the Paris Agreement transparency framework.

Tim Oakley, UK, addressed the GCOS Cooperation Mechanism, which supports parties in mitigating and adapting to climate change. He said that this mechanism responds to the need to provide capacity building and improve expert networks. He referred to training workshops for technicians and activities on telecommunications, giving the example of Chad, which has benefited from the GCOS system since 2017.

Simon Eggleston, GCOS, reported on a programme in Fiji resulting from a COP 22 decision, which addresses: upper air measurements; precipitation; increased costs in remote areas; and procurement. Explaining the global importance of upper air observations, he said that the quality of the models predicting meteorological conditions vary drastically. He emphasized ongoing work on sustainable funding, communications, transport, national precipitation observations and training that will be presented at COP 24 by SPREP, the World Meteorological Organization, the Pacific Islands Conservation Initiative and the Pacific Meteorological Council.

Barbara Ryan, GEO, emphasized the importance of partnerships to scale up data solutions at the international and national levels. She underscored the need for accessibility of data in all areas: land, oceans and space. She said that increasing capacity in data measurement and measurement frequency are important. She further emphasized the vitality of open data platforms, lamenting that a high number of governments still refuse to share information.

During closing remarks, Carolin Richter, GCOS Director, declared that “we are family” to highlight the collaborative work of all presented projects and invited continued financial support to these initiatives. 
In the ensuing discussion, participants debated, among other issues: low-cost options for precipitation observations; challenges to replace existing measurement technology with cheaper options; the global benefits of local measurements; adaptation needs of developing countries; and plans for observations in oceans.

L-R: Paul Becker, DWD; Jouni Heiskanen, ICOS; Kiyoto Tanabe, IPCC; Masanobu Kimura, Japan; Tim Oakley, UK; and Simon Eggleston, GCOS.

Tim Oakley, UK, highlighted the need to invest in adaptation measures to overcome increasing natural disasters in remote areas.

Participants during the event

Masanobu Kimura, Japan, noted inter-agency use of GOSAT in his country.

Simon Eggleston, GCOS, focused on climate observation benefits, particularly in Africa.

Stephen Briggs, GCOS Steering Committee, declared “it’s great how much we can achieve when we don’t worry about who gets the credit,” to illustrate the need for continued partnerships.

Barbara Ryan, GEO, highlighted international collaboration as the way forward to improve data accessibility and advocated for open data platforms to “close the information gap.”

L-R: Carolin Richter, GCOS, and Barbara Ryan, GEO

Participants debate, among others, low-cost options for precipitation observations.

More Information:

Climate-related Human Mobility: Connecting the Dots to Implement the Paris AgreementPresented by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

In this side event, panelists explored the topic of human mobility in climate change sharing lessons learned. Moderator Madeline Garlick, UNHCR, noted the timeliness of the session given that the Task Force on Displacement is underway.

Renate Held, IOM, noted the issue of climate-related mobility has increased in prevalence at recent COPs. She underscored the need to focus on programme and project development to address the issue and empower practitioners and policymakers to take action. She urged, in light of complex challenges, support to states to address it coherently, and proposed holding capacity-building sessions at the national level. 

Rima Al Azar, Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), shared the experience of a FAO community-driven development project in Nepal, where people most vulnerable to migration, including women, learned agriculture activities. She recommended investment in sustainable agriculture as it addresses root causes of migration, such as poverty and food insecurity.

Meredith Byrne, International Labour Organization (ILO), underscored that national development planning and regional discussions would boost resilience and address loss and damage, including through skills development. She added that these measures, along with migration through regular pathways, would help to facilitate decent work.  

Ben Schachter, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), recommended that the Task Force and the international community promote human rights policy coherence throughout the development agenda. He elaborated that parties are obligated to ensure the dignity, safety and human rights of climate migrants.

Barbara Bendandi, UN Convention on Combatting Desertification (UNCCD), explained that since September 2017, 3.2 million people have been displaced, half of them by drought. She called on the international community to take responsibility for displacement by addressing the root causes, arguing that land should have a critical role in that.

Pradeep Kurukulasuriya, UN Development Programme (UNDP), observed that climate-related mobility was fundamental to his organization’s work, adding that partnerships and accessible finance are necessary to address it.

Robert Oakes, UN University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS), underscored the importance of facilitating options when addressing mobility, as this helps to control loss and damage. He argued that forced migration should be minimized and avoided, and in the case of individuals who want to migrate, parties should enable movements to be made with dignity, which can be done by extending adaptive migration.

Verona Collantes, UN Women, called for gender equality in addressing human mobility related to climate change. She underscored that women are significantly contributing to climate change solutions and, therefore, should also have a voice in the discussion.

Amir H. Delju, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), called for increased climate literacy among vulnerable communities. He added that information on the complex human outcomes of climate change must be transformed and communicated to better manage climate risks.

Following the presentations, participants and panelists discussed: definitions and figures of climate migrants; how to identify recipients of capacity-building initiatives; the relationship between climate literacy; and a need for information and mechanisms for policy coherence within the UN system.

Ovais Sarmad, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), provided concluding remarks, reiterating the complexity of the topic, and called for scaling up policy coherence within the UN to bring out the human dimension of climate change.

Garlick added that “the spotlight is on us to do more in this situation of extreme human need.”

L-R: Renate Held, IOM; Robert Oakes, UNU-EHS; Verona Collantes, UN Women; Pradeep Kurukulasuriya, UNDP; and Amir H. Delju, WMO

Madeline Garlick, UNHCR, warned that overlooking “protection” in climate change policy could lead to human rights violations.

Verona Collantes, UN Women, stated that women and girls are disproportionately impacted by climate change.

Renate Held, IOM, said that we need policy coherence on climate-related mobility to maximize action.  

Robert Oakes, UNU-EHS, stressed that migration can increase vulnerability and put a strain on resources.

Ben Schachter, OHCHR, affirmed that migrants are entitled to human rights.

Ovais Sarmad, UNFCCC, argued that the human dimension is being diluted out of the climate change negotiations.

More Information:

Forests Country ShowcasePresented by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

In this side event, panelists explored forest landscape restoration policies, processes and lessons learned in Mexico, Uganda, El Salvador and Burundi. Horst Freiberg, Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), Germany, moderated the panel.

Fabiola Navarrete, Mexico, spoke about forest management projects in her country. She outlined four elements of the National Forestry Commission’s landscape intervention model: inter-institutional coordination; harmonization of policies among sectors; stakeholder participation; and identification and implementation of actions specifically designed to meet regional needs. Describing a pilot project on payments for environmental services and women in apiculture, she said that it is simultaneously beneficial for ecosystem protection and women’s livelihoods. She described challenges in obtaining buy-in from stakeholders.

Jorge Quezada, El Salvador, presenting on his country’s National Landscape and Ecosystem Restoration Program, described its strategic framework as aiming to: control deforestation and forest degradation; restore and conserve forest ecosystems and agroforestry systems; increase tree cover and carbon stocks; and restore degraded soil. He highlighted key success factors, including: high-level political support; good governance including full participation; building strategic alliances; emphasizing local adaptation; and addressing the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation.

Alphonse Polisi, Burundi, explaining the forest landscape restoration process in his country, outlined elements, including the National Landscape Restoration Program and a national taskforce for landscape restoration. He said a key priority is to collect data to identify priority areas for forest restoration.

Xavier Mugumya, Uganda, explained drivers of deforestation and forest degradation in his country, and said it has agreed to the Bonn Challenge commitment to restore 2.5 million hectares. He described the loss of forest cover in Uganda and outlined criteria for identifying areas that have potential for forest landscape restoration. He mentioned national policy instruments including Vision 2040, national development plans, the National Forestry Plan and the REDD+ Strategy, stating that finance is the most important missing element.

During the ensuing discussion, participants addressed, among others: policy tensions between food security and forest landscape conservation and restoration; enabling environments for finance; and mainstreaming the value of restoring ecosystems in developing countries.

Fabiola Navarrete, National Forestry Commission, Mexico, highlighted the importance of inter-institutional coordination.

Horst Freiburg, BMUB, Germany, said forest landscape restoration could be a “game-changer” for global climate action.

Jorge Quezada, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, El Salvador, described projects on drought monitoring and mangrove restoration.

Alphonse Polisi, Director for Environment and Climate Change, Burundi, emphasized his country’s commitment to forest landscape restoration.

More Information:

Slow Onset Impacts, Fast Action: Multisectoral Responses to Climate ChangePresented by the German Development Institute (DIE) and the Philippines’ Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC)

This event, chaired by Renato Redentor Constantino, ICSC, showcased research into slow-onset events and their impacts on vulnerable communities in the Philippines and Ethiopia.

Constantino expressed hope that the discourse about slow-onset events would be elevated to the same level of urgency as that of extreme events, and identified ocean acidification, sea-level rise and drought as the most prevalent disasters.

Kare Chawicha Debessa, State Minister of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Ethiopia, emphasized the importance of increasing research on slow-onset events, saying extreme events tend to overshadow the extent of damage caused by droughts, ocean acidification and sea-level rise. He reported the impacts of the recent El Niño drought on 10.2 million vulnerable people in his country and stressed the need for developing capacity and understanding to deal with these types of “creeping” emergencies.

Denise Matias, DIE, presented the results of a desktop study on slow-onset publications worldwide, and lamented the lack of research in regions most impacted by these events. Distinguishing between different scientific disciplines, she lamented that the social sciences lag behind.  

Lourdes Tibig, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report Lead Author, lamented the disconnect between policymakers, scientists and communities. She reported on research by three Philippine state universities into the three main sectors most affected on the islands, and emphasized the country’s vulnerability to extreme events, which are exacerbated by slow-onset disasters.

Tadesse Tujuba Kenea, German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ), highlighted the challenges to, and his recommendations for, addressing slow-onset events. He called for enhanced collaboration and bottom-up policies that consider the condition on the ground. He noted that data poses a challenge, as it is often unavailable, of poor quality and difficult to monitor. 

Anne Sperschneider, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, presented on several fellowships offered by her organization, which aim to build trust and understanding. She emphasized that the fellowships try to tackle broader issues, and allow researchers from developing countries to work on climate protection and climate-related resource protection. She concluded that networking amongst fellows helps to promote cross-border protection.

During the ensuing discussion, participants addressed, among other things: cooperation between policymakers and researchers; the sources of literature used in the presentations; existing impact models to see the effects of climate change on ecosystems; and the opportunities for partnerships between German climate institutes and universities in the Philippines. On the latter, Sperschneider added that the German Academic Exchange Service offers masters and PhD fellowships related to development for non-Germans.

Emmanuel de Guzman, the Philippines, closed the session, calling for evidence-based research and for governments to ensure that policies reflect realities on the ground. He reiterated that collaboration is key, particularly in creating longer-term work plans necessary in addressing slow-onset climate change.

Emmanuel de Guzman, the Philippines, commended the speakers for effectively communicating the importance of slow-onset climate events.

Lourdes Tibig, IPCC Fifth Assessment Report Lead Author, highlighted the altered pathways of cyclones in the Philippines.

Kare Chawicha Debessa, State Minister of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Ethiopia, emphasized the importance of governments’ commitment in addressing disaster impacts.

Denise Matias, DIE, cautioned that “policy alone is not enough, and neither is research.”

L-R: Anne Sperschneider, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation; Tadesse Tujuba Kenea, GFZ; Denise Matias, GIZ; and Lourdes Tibig, IPCC Fifth Assessment Report Lead Author

More Information:


Addressing Uncertainties in Estimating GHG Emissions and Removals in the Agriculture, Forestry And Other Land Uses (AFOLU) Sector to Strengthen Land Management ImpactsPresented by Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement (CIRAD), Cornell University, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA) and New Zealand

In this side event, panelists explored biological methods for carbon removal, including soil carbon storage. Jean-Luc Chotte, IRD, moderated the panel.

Marc Sadler, World Bank, noted the need to move away from current agriculture and land-use practices, and emphasized the importance of communicating the co-benefits of soil carbon storage to farmers. He said the challenge is to deliver “viable, reliable and stable” incomes to farmers to encourage them to continue feeding the planet while supporting them to do so in a low-carbon and resilient way.

Johannes Lehmann, Cornell University, said that even a small fraction of increase in soil carbon storage would make a large difference to the global carbon budget. He listed various approaches, which need to be combined, including water management, enhanced root phenotypes, cropland management, grazing land management, biochar application, and restoration of degraded land. He highlighted that uncertainty is not variability and that a “management learning” approach is needed when implementing soil carbon projects.

Lini Wollenberg, CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), reported on a study assessing measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) of emission reductions from livestock in 140 countries. She stated that 85% of the developing countries surveyed were not using MRV practices that could capture mitigation. On barriers to MRV, she highlighted weak links with national data providers and finance for data collection and emissions research.

Martial Bernoux, FAO, reported on a study assessing NDCs, stating that 98% of countries included agriculture, and 89% mentioned a relationship between mitigation and agriculture. He called for policies reconciling adaptation, mitigation and agriculture, and noted country priorities for international support, including: research, analysis and data; capacity building; and the mobilization of public and private finance.

Özgül Erdemli Mutlu, Turkish Foundation for Combating Soil Erosion, for Reforestation and the Protection of Natural Habitats (TEMA Foundation), underlined the role of NGOs in communicating technical information about soil carbon to policymakers. She highlighted the interconnectedness of the UNCCD and UNFCCC processes, urging to “break down these silos.” She lamented the lack of capacity in analyzing soil data, and suggested setting land degradation neutrality targets. Noting the inclusion of non-state actors in the Paris Agreement, she said it is important to consider local stakeholders.

Souleymane Konate, University of Nangui Abrogoua, explained difficulties in analyzing data, noting that in Côte d'Ivoire, sufficient data is collected from farming institutions but difficulties arise at the scientific level. He called for a common methodology for data analysis, stating that “we are credible if we have reliable data.”

Pascal Martinez, Global Environment Facility (GEF), outlined his organization’s work, highlighting the diversity in countries and agencies it works with. He emphasized the need to provide concrete and credible environmental data, and reported progress in the development of new tools to do so. He said the GEF is trying to improve data quality in terms of carbon benefits.

During the ensuing discussion, participants addressed, among others: capacity building and strengthening partnerships; communicating with farmers; renewable energy and manure management; prospects for scaling-up soil carbon storage; and geoengineering.

L-R: Souleymane Konate, University of Nangui Abrogoua; Marc Sadler, World Bank; Lini Wollenberg, CCAFS; Martial Bernoux, FAO; Jean-Luc Chotte, IRD; Özgül Erdemli Mutlu, TEMA Foundation; Pascal Martinez, GEF; and Johannes Lehmann, Cornell University

Martial Bernoux, FAO, called for harmonizing data collection tools and methodologies.

Özgül Erdemli Mutlu, TEMA Foundation, called for building capacity in soil data analysis.

Pascal Martinez, GEF, said that the GEF is “on the eve of a new era”.

Marc Sadler, World Bank, said that agriculture is currently an “extractive industry” which needs to change.

Souleymane Konate, University of Nangui Abrogoua, said that uncertainty in data is a key issue.

Lini Wollenberg, CCAFS, recommended South-South experience sharing on priorities for livestock MRV system development.

More Information:

5 Years of Experiences Gained from the Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM): Lessons Learned and Way ForwardPresented by the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA)

This session, moderated by Stefano De Clara, IETA, centered on the Japanese Government’s experience with the JCM, including its development, methodologies and credit issuing schemes. Participants debated the relationship between existing markets, the JCM and Article 6 of the Paris Agreement (cooperative approaches).

Naoki Torii, Japan, provided an overview of the JCM and experiences gained from its implementation in his country. He said that the Paris Agreement had a significant impact on the JCM, and that more research is needed to explore how to manage the issued credits and the linkages to this global regime. He noted several supporting schemes designed to smooth the process, underscoring that government-to-government consultations help adjust to new rules. 

Shinichiro Sano, Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting (MURC), spoke on JCM process and statistics, explaining the procedures and methodologies. He emphasized the importance of transparency through public consultations and a credit registration system to avoid double counting. He also noted that 21 projects had been registered in six countries, and compared time requirements between the JCM and the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). 

Kentaro Takahashi, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), spoke on options for accounting related to Internationally Transferred Mitigation Outcomes (ITMOS) under the Paris Agreement. He said that double counting occurs when there appears to be a reduction in overall emissions, but actual emissions remain constant or increase. He called on parties to prioritize this issue. 

Simon Henry, the International Carbon Reduction and Offset Alliance (ICROA), explained the role of his organization, which provides codes of best practice to companies. He noted governments’ bilateral approaches in addressing double counting and improving compliance with international agreements. 

Jeff Swartz, South Pole Group, highlighted projects developed to provide emitting companies with carbon neutrality and carbon positive goals, in order to enhance their social and environmental co-benefits. He noted Australia as a key market, as the government guarantees the acquisition of carbon credits for 10 years. He said that, in the context of Article 6, JCM has an early mover advantage. 

Jos Cozijnsen, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), recalled that Article 6.4 addresses global reductions and said that more models need to be developed in order to improve emission reductions by sector. He suggested opportunities for the JCM to work with REDD+ and noted that single rather than double counting is the major JCM challenge. 

In the ensuing discussion, participants discussed, inter alia: the modalities of trading carbon credits between countries; climate finance; and how other countries approach the JCM. On the way forward for the JCM, panelists indicated: increased targets under the JCM by 2030; renewed targets for 2050; and guidelines provided by the rulebook operationalizing the Paris Agreement.

L-R: Stefano De Clara, IETA; Jos Cozijnsen, EDF ; Jeff Swartz, South Pole Group; Naoki Torii, Japan; Kentaro Takahashi, IGES; and Simon Henry, ICROA

Shinichiro Sano, MURC, noted the JCM methodology is country-specific but that energy efficiency remains the main one in Japan.

Kentaro Takahashi, IGES, noted that schemes such as “cap and trade” and “credits” should be designed to reduce overall emissions.

Jos Cozijnsen, EDF , said the Japanese were “wise to advance the JCM ahead of all countries.”

Naoki Torii, Japan, noted that the “world of the Paris Agreement is completely different from the one of the Kyoto Protocol” and that ensuring environmental integrity is crucial for the success of this global agreement.

More Information:


Negotiating blocs
African Union
Small Island Developing States
Non-state coalitions