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bringing you the latest news, information and analysis from
international environment and sustainable development negotiations




This page was updated on: 12/09/10



Climate and Atmosphere Media Reports Archives: 2009; 2008; 2007; 2006; 2005; 2004; 2003; 2002


Latest Media Reports

UNEP to Assist Maldives in Becoming Carbon Neutral

UNEP and World Customs Organization Confiscate ODS

Ozone Secretariat Releases ImpCom Report

World Bank and UNDP Launch Climate Finance Options Database


UNEP to Assist Maldives in Becoming Carbon Neutral

12 November 2010: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has announced it is collaborating with GTZ and the Government of the Maldives to assist the country in becoming carbon neutral by 2020. Assistance will be provided to the Maldives through the implementation of a pilot air-conditioning project, with zero ozone depleting and low global warming potential (GWP). Under the initiative, GTZ will fund the demonstration project and UNEP will provide policy and technical assistance. The Government of the Maldives recently announced its Carbon-Neutral Government Program, under which 11 government offices will be made carbon-neutral in an effort towards achieving the country's Carbon-Neutral Pledge. The collaboration with UNEP and GTZ are intended to contribute to this. UNEP aims to replicate the cooperation model in other countries. [UNEP OzonAction Newsletter]


UNEP and World Customs Organization Confiscate ODS

A joint initiative by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Customs Organization, entitled Sky-hole Patching II and involving over 80 countries, has resulted in the confiscation of over 7,500 cylinders of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), and other ozone depleting substances. Most seizures took place in the Asia and Pacific region, notably in China, Thailand, Hong Kong, China and India [Joint WCO/UNEP Operation Nets Large Haul of Ozone Depleting Substances]


Ozone Secretariat Releases ImpCom Report

The Ozone Secretariat has released the advance report of the 45th Meeting of the Implementation Committee (ImpCom) under the Non-Compliance Procedure for the Montreal Protocol, which convened from 4-5 November, in Bangkok, Thailand. The outcomes of the ImpCom were adopted by the 22nd Meeting of the Parties (MOP 22). [The report]


World Bank and UNDP Launch Climate Finance Options Database 

30 November 2010: The World Bank and UN Development Programme (UNDP) have launched a Climate Finance Options platform, which allows users to track climate-change related finance by region, focus area, sector or financing mechanism. The database seeks to respond to information needs on the multitude of funds available for climate action in developing countries. The platform aims to help stakeholders in developing countries, such as project developers and local government officials, orient themselves in the field of climate finance and find most suitable sources of funds. [The platform]


European Commission Issues Guidelines on Wind Energy in Protected Areas

29 October 2010: The European Commission has issued guidelines for wind energy development in protected areas, recognizing the potential negative impacts of poorly sited or designed wind farms on vulnerable species and habitats. The guidelines apply to the Natura 2000 network – an EU-wide ecological network of nearly 26,000 sites covering almost 18% of the EU's land area. Wind energy deployment is not automatically excluded from the Natura 2000 network. The guidelines highlight the importance of strategic planning and quality assessment of new developments, and contain best practice examples. Wind energy is expected to play a significant role in reaching the EU target of obtaining 20% of its energy consumption from renewable sources by 2020. [EU press release] [The guidance]


World Bank Signs First ERPA on Soil Carbon in Africa

November 2010: The World Bank signed the first African Emission Reduction Purchase Agreement (ERPA) on soil carbon for the Kenya Agricultural Carbon Project, located on 45,000 hectares in the Nyanza Province and Western Province of Kenya. Small-holder farmers and small-scale business entrepreneurs are trained in cropland management techniques, which increase the yield of the land and generate additional sources of income for the farmers through the payment for environmental services in the form of carbon credits. The World Bank-administered BioCarbon Fund will buy the carbon credits, providing direct benefit to local communities of over US$350,000 with an initial payment of US$80,000 to be made in 2011. [World Bank press release]


UNEP FI Calls for Policies to Spur Private Investment in Low-carbon Growth

16 November 2010: The UN Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) Climate Change Working Group, together with partners, have called for national and international policies that will spur private investment into low-carbon growth and protect the world economy from the worst impacts of climate change, in a statement issued in the lead-up to Cancun. According to UNEP, the 259 signatories represent the largest-ever group of investors to call for government action on climate change, or risk economic disruptions far more severe than the recent financial crisis. The statement calls for domestic policies in both developed and developing countries including: short-, mid- and long-term greenhouse gas reduction targets; energy and transportation policies to accelerate deployment of energy efficiency, renewable energy, green buildings, clean vehicles and clean fuels; strong and sustained price signals on carbon emissions and well-designed carbon markets; phase out of fossil-fuel subsidies, as agreed to by G-20 leaders in 2009; adaptation measures to reduce unavoidable climate change impacts; and corporate disclosure of material climate-related risks. [Press release]


UNEP and WCO Intercept Large Haul of ODS

November 2010: A joint initiative by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Customs Organization (WCO), entitled Sky-hole Patching II and involving over 80 countries, has resulted in the confiscation of over 7,500 cylinders of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and other ozone depleting substances. Most seizures took place in the Asia and Pacific region, notably in China, Thailand, Hong Kong, China and India. [Press release]


ACP Observatory on Migration to Track Migration Flows

The African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Observatory on Migration, a joint initiative of the European Commission and the ACP countries, was launched officially at a special ceremony in Brussels, Belgium, held on 25 October 2010. The Observatory is intended to provide reliable data on migration flows in ACP countries, with climate change as one of its key research topics. The Observatory will be run by the International Migration Organization (IOM) and and a consortium of 15 partners and four associates, with nearly 8 million Euros funding from the EU and additional financial support from Switzerland and IOM. It will cover all six ACP regions and start with pilot programmes in 12 countries. The Observatory is expected to introduce an innovative approach to enhance research capacities in ACP countries and assist in designing better policies to enhance the contribution of migration to development. [EU press release] [IOM press release]


UNEP Launches Reports from Carbon Mapping Project

The UN Environment Programme-World Conservation Monitoring Center (UNEP-WCMC) has launched carbon maps showing how carbon stocks in Asia, Africa and Latin America overlap with biodiversity hot spots. Launched at the 10th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 10) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), convening in Nagoya, Japan, the maps were produced with the aim of assisting governments in setting priorities for carbon investments. According to UNEP, the maps pinpoint places where investments in carbon can contribute to community livelihoods, forest conservation and fighting climate change. The maps overlay the carbon held in the vegetation and soils of terrestrial ecosystems with population density, protected areas and economic activities. UNEP launched carbon mapping publications for Cambodia, Ecuador, Argentina, Nigeria and China on carbon, biodiversity and ecosystem services [Carbon Mapping Project].


Ozone Secretariat Releases Additional MOP-22 Documents

The Ozone Secretariat has released additional documents in the lead up to MOP-22 including: information on illegal trade in ozone-depleting substances reported by Uzbekistan; the Technology and Economic Assessment Panel Final Report, Evaluation of 2010 Critical Use Nominations for Methyl Bromide and Related Matters; and status of licensing systems and focal points. [Ozone Secretariat website]


WWAP and Partners Organize Film Contest

22 September 2010: The UN World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) and, with the support of the Mexican National Water Commission (CONAGUA), the Mexican Consejo Consultivo del Agua, A.C., are organizing the "Water, Climate and… Action!" short film contest. The entries, which should describe experiences and outline messages about climate change and its aspects on water and life, will be accepted from 22 September-15 November 2010. Selected short films will be projected during a side event at the 16th session of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) (COP 16), to be held in Cancun, Mexico, at the end of the year.  They will also be used to help raise awareness of policy makers of the need for urgent action to adapt to the effects of climate change. [Film contest website]


Ozone Secretariat Announces MOP-22 Venue Change

The Ozone Secretariat has announced the relocation of the 22nd Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol. Originally scheduled to take place in Kampala, Uganda, the event will now take place in Bangkok, Thailand. [Ozone Secretariat notification]


UNEP Joins Clean Stove Initiative

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has joined the Global Alliance for Clean Cook Stoves, an initiative launched at the 65th Session of the General Assembly, and aiming to reduce deaths linked with indoor emissions, by boosting the efficiency of approximately three billion cook stoves across Africa, Asia and Latin America. [UNEP press release]


UNEP Provides Adaptation Assistance to Rwanda

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) have announced the implementation of the Rwandan Climate Change and Development Project - Adapting by Reducing Vulnerability (CC DARE). The project involves relocating human settlements from Rwanda's sloping Gishwati Forest, an area that has suffered severe environmental degradation, exacerbated by extreme weather events. The joint UNEP/UNDP CC DARE programme aims to complement and strengthen ongoing and planned adaptation and risk management activities, based on national priorities. [UNEP press release]


WWAP and Partners Organize Film Contest

22 September 2010: The UN World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP) and, with the support of the Mexican National Water Commission (CONAGUA), the Mexican Consejo Consultivo del Agua, A.C., are organizing the "Water, Climate and… Action!" short film contest. The entries, which should describe experiences and outline messages about climate change and its aspects on water and life, will be accepted from 22 September-15 November 2010. Selected short films will be projected during a side event at the 16th session of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, to be held in Cancun, Mexico, at the end of the year. They will also be used to help raise awareness of policy makers of the need for urgent action to adapt to the effects of climate change. [Film contest website]


Five New Countries Join UN-REDD as Partner Countries

3 September 2010: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Central African Republic, Colombia and Guatemala have joined the UN-REDD Programme as partner countries. The Programme has nine pilot countries, where reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD)-readiness activities are taking place, and now 18 partner countries, which can take part in the Programme's online community of practice for sharing knowledge and networking. Partner countries can also take part in global and regional workshops, including technical workshops, and attend UN-REDD Policy Board meetings as official observers. [UN-REDD press release]


UNEP Announces Emissions Reductions Plan

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has released a master plan to reduce its carbon footprint. Between 2010 and 2012, UNEP has committed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 3% each year from 2009 levels. A key target area is work-related travel by UNEP employees, which currently accounts for over 85% of UNEP's carbon emissions. The new strategy aims to reduce employee travel by 3% each year from 2010-2012. UNEP will also introduce a 'green meetings' policy, which will require all UNEP-related conferences, events and meetings to adhere to UNEP's 2009 Green Meeting Guide. [UNEP web site]


Multilateral Fund Releases Summary of Executive Committee Decisions

The Secretariat of the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol has released a summary of decisions taken by the Executive Committee, which convened for its 61st meeting, in Montreal, Canada, from 5-9 July 2010. The Committee approved investment projects and work programme activities with a value of just under US$21.4 million, plus US $1.6 million in support costs for bilateral/implementing agencies, and took a total of 53 decisions, including the approval of the first tranches of HCFC phase-out management plans for Cambodia, Croatia and Ghana. [Multilateral Fund web site]


JULY 2010


World Bank Funded Project Registers First CDM Program of Activities in Africa

26 July 2010: The World Bank has supported the launch of a Municipal Waste Compost Program in Uganda, the first African country to successfully register a Program of Activities (POA) under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol. The Uganda POA is the first of its kind in the world, and promotes solid waste composting in urban areas, a system that, unlike landfills, returns organic matter to the soil, prevents land degradation, and significantly reduces methane emissions. A total of 156,889 Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) and 52,296 Verified Emission Reductions (VERs) will be sold to the World Bank's Community Development Carbon Fund. [World Bank press release]


UNDP Supports Strategic Investment to Address Climate Change in LDCs

July 2010: In order to strengthen support to Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in their work on climate change in the lead up to the negotiations in Cancun and beyond, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) has committed US$5.6 million toward a programme on "Strategic Investment in Addressing Climate Change in LDCs." The purpose of the programme is to strengthen the programmatic capacity in the area of climate change of select LDCs through the provision of focused expertise at the regional and national levels during 2010-2011. This initiative will provide focused climate change expertise, including senior-level national climate change specialists in 24 LDCs. These National Officers, currently under recruitment, will be the focal point for in-country climate change work.


Specifically, the programme will aim to build capacity as it relates to climate change in the following areas: policy dialogue and awareness raising; capacity development for participating in the international negotiations process; national low-carbon and climate resilient strategy and action plan definition; cross practice and mainstreaming; climate change proofing; knowledge management; methodology coherence; and financing instruments. The participating countries in this initiative are: Bangladesh, Benin, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Djibouti, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Guinea Bissau, Haiti, Kenya, Laos, Lesotho, Liberia, Maldives, Mali, Mozambique, Nepal, Samoa, Senegal, Solomon Islands, Tanzania, Timor Leste, Togo, Zambia and Yemen.


UNDP currently works in 49 LDCs that will face various climate change challenges from risk of inundation as sea levels rise, increased flooding of low-lying coastal areas, increased variability in rainfall, and hotter and drier climates. Tropical diseases such as malaria could increase and fragile genetic species could face the risk of extinction as a result of climate change. [UNDP Climate Change] [IISDRS]


MARPOL Regulations for Air Pollution from Ships Enter into Force

1 July 2010: The revised Annex VI (Regulations for the Prevention of Air Pollution from Ships) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL Convention) entered into force globally on 1 July 2010, together with regulations for reductions in sulphur oxide (SOx) emissions in specific areas. These regulations were adopted in October 2004. To date, MARPOL Annex VI has been ratified by 59 countries, representing approximately 84% of the gross tonnage of the world's merchant shipping fleet. [IMO press release, 1 July 2010]

JUNE 2010

IPCC Selects Authors for Fifth Assessment Report

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has released the final list of climate change experts who will prepare the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) to be published between 2013 and 2014. The list includes Coordinating Lead Authors, Lead Authors and Review Editors. In total, 827 experts will contribute to the AR5, divided between the three Working Groups (WG) of the Panel. WG I focuses on the physical science basis and will include 258 experts. WG II, which assesses the impacts, adaptation strategies and vulnerability related to climate change, will involve 302 experts. The assessment in WG III, which covers mitigation response strategies in an integrated risk and uncertainty framework, will be carried out by 267 experts. [IPCC press release]


World Bank Appoints Special Envoy for Climate Change

Robert Zoellick, World Bank President, announced the appointment of Andrew Steer as Special Envoy for Climate Change, a new position created for focused leadership and representation of the World Bank in the international climate change discussions. [World Bank press release]



25 May 2010: The World Bank has approved its first development policy loan dedicated to climate change mitigation and adaptation, in Indonesia. The US$200 million loan is designed to support the Indonesian Government in its efforts to adopt a lower carbon, more climate-resilient growth path, and focuses on mitigating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions; enhancing adaptation and resiliency efforts in key sectors; and strengthening the institutions and policies needed for a successful climate change response. World Bank press release.



The Multilateral Fund has released a summary report of the 60th meeting of the Executive Committee, which convened from 12-15 April 2010, in Montreal, Canada. The Committee finalized guidelines for the phase-out of HCFC consumption, and addressed issues related to the phase-out of HCFC production and pharmaceutical grade CFCs for metered dose inhalers. The Committee approved investment projects and work programme activities valued at over US$31 million, plus US$2.45 million in support costs for bilateral/implementing agencies. It also took 51 decisions including the approval of the first tranches of two HCFC phase-out management plans.


Link to further information

Executive Committee meeting report

MAY 2010


The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) have announced an initiative to reduce the carbon footprint of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Under the initiative, the GEF has provided US$1 million to help retrofit solar panels on public street lights, traffic lights and billboards around the stadia in the six cities hosting the World Cup. UNEP and GEF will continue to announce activities in the lead up to the World Cup.


Link to further information

UNEP press release, 25 May 2010



The European Investment Bank (EIB), the French Development Agency (AFD) and the European Development Finance Institutions (EDFI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish the "Interact Climate Change Fund," an investment matching facility to fund private sector climate change projects in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP), Asia and Latin America before the end of 2010.


In other news, the EIB and Daiwa Securities Group announced the issuance of Climate Awareness Bonds to finance the EIB's future lending projects in the fields of renewable energy and energy efficiency. The proceeds of this new EIB bond issue will be dedicated to future lending projects on: renewable energy, such as wind, hydro, solar and geothermal energy production; and energy efficiency, such as district heating, co-generation, building insulation, energy-loss reduction in transmission and distribution, and equipment replacement with energy efficiency improvements of 20% or more.


Link to further information

EIB press release, 7 May 2010

EIB press release, 30 April 2010



The Montreal Protocol Technology and Economic Assessment Panel (TEAP) has released an assessment of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and environmentally sound alternatives, and a scoping study on alternatives to HCFC refrigerants under high ambient temperature conditions. The reports are in response to Decision XXI/9, paragraph 2, which requests the TEAP in its 2010 Progress Report to: list all sub-sectors using HCFCs, with concrete examples of technologies where low-global warming potential (GWP) alternatives are used; identify and characterize the implemented measures for ensuring safe application of low-GWP alternative technologies and products as well as barriers to their phase-in; and predict the amount of high-GWP alternatives to ozone-depleting substances uses that can potentially be replaced. The report includes chapters on: definitions of high- and low-GWP; methods and metrics for prioritizing investment to minimize climate impacts; domestic, commercial, industrial and transport refrigeration; unitary, chiller and vehicle air conditioning; foams; fire protection; solvents; and inhaled therapy.  


Link to further information

TEAP report



The Global Environment Facility (GEF) has published documents for the Fourth GEF Assembly, including a report of its Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP), which highlights that climate change is "even more dangerous than previously expected" and identifies a series of climate change tipping points (GEF/A.4/3).


Other documents include the GEF Fourth Overall Performance Study (GEF/A.4/4) and an introduction to the topics of roundtable discussions that will take place during the Assembly, which will take place in Punta del Este, Uruguay, from 24-28 May 2010 (GEF/A.4/Inf.2).


Link to further information

Fourth GEF Assembly documents

APRIL 2010


The report of the Secretary-General's Advisory Group on Energy and Climate Change was launched on 28 April 2010. According to the report, it would be possible to provide universal access to modern energy services by 2030 without significantly increasing greenhouse gas emissions, by scaling up renewable energy and other low-emission technologies. The report indicates that achieving energy efficiency by 2030 would require annual investments of US$30 billion to US$35 billion for low-income countries and US$140 billion to US$170 billion for middle-income countries. The report also calls for a 40 per cent reduction, or 2.5% annually, in global energy intensity by 2030, which is nearly double the historic rate. The Advisory Group was established in 2009 and comprised 20 business leaders, academics and representatives of the UN and civil society.


Links to further information

Press conference, 28 April 2010

UN News Centre report, 28 April 2010



The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director Josette Sheeran indicated that the intense droughts in Niger are escalating the humanitarian crisis and contributing to mass migration from rural to urban areas as well as to neighboring countries. She has announced that WFP will step up its aid to support 2.3 million people, particularly pregnant women and children, in the arid eastern Sahel region. UN Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes is visiting West Africa attempt to review disaster management cooperation, risk reduction and strengthening humanitarian coordination. He will focus on the need to address the root causes of recurring food crisis in the region and consider some of the long-term solutions such as investments in smallholder agriculture and rural infrastructure, strengthening poverty alleviation interventions and disaster risk reduction vis-à-vis the growing threats of climate change. John Holmes is travelling to Zinder area of Southern Niger to assess the human impact of the food crisis which is estimated to be affecting 7.8 million people. He has made an appeal to donors for $133 million to respond to the crisis. In addition, he is calling for help to support some two million people in Chad, 258,000 Malians, 370,000 Mauritanians and vulnerable communities in northern Nigeria.


Links to further information:

Climate Change Policy & Practice Daily Feed, 26 April 2010



Spain has become the first country to make a significant contribution to the Adaptation Fund. The country's contribution of 45 million Euros (US$60 million) will help the Fund finance climate change adaptation projects and programs in developing countries. In accordance with the rules of the Adaptation Fund, the money will be disbursed at the discretion of the Adaptation Fund Board to meet the most pressing funding needs of developing countries, without any conditions imposed by the donor.

The Adaptation Fund is a self-standing fund established under the Kyoto Protocol of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. It is funded from a two percent share of proceeds of all Certified Emission Reductions issued under the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism projects. The Fund is designed to finance concrete climate change adaptation projects and programmes based on the needs and priorities of developing countries


Links to further information

Climate Change Policy & Practice web site



The Global Environment Facility (GEF) Small Grants Programme (SGP) is piloting a residential project to showcase renewable energy and energy efficiency practices in apartment buildings in Armenia. Specifically, the project supports the installation of energy efficient (EE) doors and windows, EE lighting systems and solar hot water and heating systems. It has already produced tangible results, with a 40% reduction in the consumption of natural gas by residents and a 10% reduction in electricity use. It is envisaged that by the end of the project in August 2010, reduction of CO2 emissions will reach about 62 tones. The GEF SGP has provided US$30,970 to the project, which has strategic importance for Armenia, a country with no domestic sources of fossil fuel and an immense potential for development of alternative energy resources use and EE technologies in the housing sector. The direct beneficiaries of the project are 15 households and 3 public service facilities located in the pilot building.

In other GEF SGP news, on 27 March 2010, China officially became one of the countries implementing SGP projects. In 2009, China announced its first call for proposals for SGP grants, receiving 156 proposals within a 30 day period. The National Steering Committee of SGP China approved 22 projects, which encompass all of GEF's six focal areas.


Links to further information

GEF press release

GEF Small Grants Programme

China SGP News



The Adaptation Fund has launched a new version of its website. The website can be accessed at the same URL and features several new user-specific sections. Among the new sections are the list of national and multilateral implementing entities so far accredited by the Adaptation Fund Board, and communications from the Board to the parties, such as the recently issued call for project and programme proposals. 


Links to further information

Adaptation Fund web site

RSS feed



The Ozone Secretariat has released documents for the 30th meeting of the Open-Ended Working Work (OEWG 30), which is scheduled to convene in Bangkok, Thailand, from 14-18 June 2010. Documents include the provision agenda, information note for participants, and a note from the Secretariat on issues for discussion (UNEP/OzL.Pro.WG.1/30/2).


Link to further information

Ozone Secretariat website



Earth Hour, a global call to action on climate change, took place on 27 March 2010, from 8:30-9:30 pm (local time). Earth Hour started in 2007 in Sydney, Australia, when 2.2 million homes and businesses turned their lights off for one hour to make their stand against climate change. In 2008, Earth Hour became a global sustainability movement, with more than 50 million people across 35 countries participating. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted that the event asked the world to turn off its lights to serve as both a "warning and a beacon of hope." International landmarks went dark as lights were switched off in thousands of cities around the world. The event was organized by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), which said that global participation in this year's event jumped to 126 countries from 88 nations last year, with the goal as before, being to raise public awareness about the threat of climate change.


Links to further information

Voice of America press release

UNEP press release



Indonesia and the UN-REDD Programme launched efforts to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD) in Indonesia by supporting the Indonesian Ministry of Forestry in their preparations for national REDD implementation. US$5.6 million, provided by the Norwegian Government, was allocated to help with policy preparation, testing of methodologies, and coordination between the different REDD initiatives in Indonesia. In launching the initiative, Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan highlighted the importance of local communities in REDD, calling for REDD to help improve livelihoods of forest-dependent communities, as well as preserve forests and biodiversity.


Links to further information

Indonesian Embassy of Norway media release

UN-REDD News feed

MARCH 2010


Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), took part in a panel discussion at the Kenya International Conference Center in Nairobi, and explained that the IMF is working on the idea of a "Green Fund" with the capacity to raise US$100 billion a year by 2020. He further clarified that the IMF does not intend to manage such a fund, but presents the idea as the UN High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing is about to begin its work.


Link to further information

IMF press release, 8 March 2010



The World Bank has presented Africa's first large-scale forestry project to be registered under the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). The Humbo Assisted Natural Regeneration Project will bring environmental, economic and social benefits to poor communities in Ethiopia and is expected to cut an estimated 880,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere over the next 30 years. The sale of carbon credits under the BioCarbon Fund will provide an income stream of over US$700,000 to the local communities over a minimum of ten years.


Link to additional information

World Bank press release, 3 March 2010



The UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Standard Bank and the German Government's International Climate Initiative are collaborating on the Africa Carbon Asset Development (ACAD) Facility. ACAD supports African carbon projects through a combination of technical assistance, grants and preferential access to corporate finance and transactional guidance. Taking a new approach toward capacity and market development, ACAD shares costs and risks with African banks such as Standard Bank to realize and replicate projects.

According to UNEP, the ACAD partnership couples UNEP's longstanding capacity building expertise in environmental policy and finance with the financial know-how and regional reach of Standard Bank.


ACAD has recently awarded its first grants to innovative development projects including: providing partial payment for validation costs under the Cleaner Development Mechanism on the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project in Kenya; and supporting the costs of engineering and carbon auditing studies required to earn carbon credits of the Lagos Waste Management Authority in Nigeria, which is developing several waste-to-energy sites.


Link to further information

UNEP press release, 3 March 2010



Earth Hour, a global call to action to every individual, business and community throughout the world, will take place on Saturday, 27 March 2010, between 8:30 pm and 9:30 pm (local time). Earth Hour started in 2007 in Sydney, Australia, when 2.2 million homes and businesses turned their lights off for one hour to make their stand against climate change. In 2008, Earth Hour became a global sustainability movement with more than 50 million people across 35 countries participating.


Links to further information

WWF Earth Hour website



At a press conference held on 10 March 2010, at UN Headquarters in New York, US, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Chair Rajendra Pachauri launched an Independent Review of the IPCC's processes and procedures. At the event, Ban and Pachauri announced that they had asked the InterAcademy Council (IAC), which is the umbrella organization for various national academies of science from countries around the world, to conduct an independent review of the IPCC's processes and procedures to further strengthen the quality of the Panel's reports on climate change. The review will examine every aspect of how the IPCC's reports are prepared, including the use of non-peer reviewed literature and the reflection of diverse viewpoints and institutional aspects, such as management functions as well as the Panel's procedures for making public its findings.


Links to further information

IPCC press release

Terms of reference of the IAC

Press conference transcript



The Stockholm Convention Secretariat has announced a 12-month international study into the influence of climate change and persistent organic pollutants (POPs) on human health and the environment. The study will involve organizations in five countries reviewing the latest science to inform the assessment of current and new POPs. The outcomes of the study are expected to result in policy recommendations on how to mitigate the impacts of POPs under a changing climate. According to the Secretariat, the potential impact of climate change on the behavior of POPs in the environment is complex, but some data suggest that higher temperatures can make wildlife more sensitive to exposure to certain pollutants. Climatic change is expected to alter the partitioning of POPs among environmental compartments (air, water, soil, sediments, snow and ice). These factors are likely to influence the transfer, redistribution and uptake of POPs, along with the overall concentrations of POPs around the globe.


Link to further information

Stockholm Convention press release



Costa Rica, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, the Philippines, Republic of Congo, Solomon Islands and Sudan have been invited to join the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board. With these additions, there are now 13 UN-REDD observer countries, along with 9 pilot countries. While UN-REDD funding is programmed for the pilot countries, observer countries can take advantage of networking and knowledge-sharing benefits facilitated by the Programme. The Programme continues to consider requests from all countries.


Link to further information

UN-REDD media release



The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is financing a series of studies and projects on climate change in Asia. Together with the United Kingdom it will fund a US$1.2 million study to help South Asia analyze the costs and benefits of climate change adaptation actions, through a study on "Regional Economics of Climate Change in South Asia Part II: Adaptation and Impact Assessment." A climate policy simulation tool will be developed for policy makers in the region to show the economic consequences of different climate policy measures.


The ADB is also providing support to several projects, including  an evaluation of the potential to reduce greenhouse gases in five energy-intensive industries, namely iron and steel, power generation, chemicals, building materials and non-ferrous metals in the Yunnan Province, China. It will also fund the establishment and feasibility studies for large-scale concentrated solar thermal plants in China. Together with the Government of Japan, ADB will also strengthen the capacity of Bhutan's National Environment Commission for developing mitigation and adaptation measures that can counter climate change by promoting hydropower and other renewable energy projects suitable for participating in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the Kyoto Protocol, and for potential carbon trading. With the Government of Australia, ADB will also provide funding to assess climate change threats and adaptation needs in the Mekong Delta region in Viet Nam.


Links to further information

ADB press release, 4 February 2010

ADB press release, 13 January 2010

ADB press release, 21 January 2010

ADB press release, 25 January 2010

ADB press release, 29 January 2010



The parties to the Protocol on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) to the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (CLRTAP) have agreed to broaden the Protocol's scope to include seven new substances. The decision was taken at the 27th session of the Executive Body of CLRTAP, which convened from 14-18 December 2009. The additional chemicals include: hexachlorobutadiene, octabromodiphenyl ether, pentachlorobenzene, pentabromodiphenyl ether, perfluorooctane sulfonates, polychlorinated naphthalenes, and short-chain chlorinated paraffins. Parties also updated and upgraded the Protocol's current obligations for eliminating the production and use of a number of POPs regulated by the Protocol (DDT, heptachlor, hexachlorobenzene and PCBs) and for fixing emission limit values from waste incineration, and adopted guidance on best available techniques to control emissions of POPs.


Links to further information

UNECE press release, 8 January 2010

27th Executive Body meeting documents


Climate change negotiations set to resume in April

The next round of climate change negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is scheduled to take place from 9-11 April 2010, in Bonn, Germany. The decision was taken on 22 February, by the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC at its first meeting of the year. The 11-member Bureau met at the seat of the UN Climate Change Secretariat in Bonn. The Bureau is responsible for advising the COP President and for taking decisions with regard to the overall management of the intergovernmental process.

In addition to the meeting in April, two major negotiating sessions are currently scheduled for 2010: the 32nd session of the UNFCCC Convention subsidiary bodies, from 31 May-11 June 2010, and COP-16 and the sixth Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP/MOP-6) in Mexico from 29 November-10 December 2010.


Link to further information

UNFCCC press release



In accordance with Decision XX 1/4 on unneeded ozone depleting substances (ODS) and ODS bank equipment, the Ozone Secretariat has initiated an information exchange mechanism on available chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) stocks. The initiative facilitates contact between the relevant industries holding pharmaceutical grade CFC stockpiles, and those that have an interest in them. 


Link to further information

Ozone Convention website



The Ozone Network for the Europe and Central Asia (ECA) Network has launched the 2010 Ozone Protection Award. Individual customs and enforcement officers who successfully prevented illegal trade of ozone-depleting substances (ODS) or products/equipment relying on ODS to, or from, member countries of the regional ozone network for the ECA Network are eligible for nomination. Nominations are due by 30 June 2010.


Link to further information

ECA website



An Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use methodology is being assessed under the Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS) double approval process, and has been posted on the VCS website for a 30-day public comment period. This methodology is a "Baseline and monitoring methodology for conservation projects that avoid planned land use conversion in peat swamp forests, Infinite Earth, Ltd."


Links to further information

The methodology
Full list of methodology elements available for public comment



The Ramsar Secretariat celebrated World Wetlands Day on 2 February 2010, around the theme "Wetlands, Biodiversity and Climate Change" and with the slogan "Caring for wetlands: an answer to climate change." In a message to mark the Day, Anada Tiéga, Secretary General of the Ramsar Secretariat, explained that the Day provides an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of these vital ecosystems for our common future. He said this year's theme "captures the sense of urgency we all feel about the need to address the potentially disastrous consequences of global climate change as quickly as possible, particularly in the wake of the Copenhagen meeting of the UNFCCC."


Links to further information

World Wetlands Day 2010 website

Ramsar Secretary General's statement



The Voluntary Carbon Standard Association (VCSA) has announced that the scope of the Voluntary Carbon Standard Program has been extended to include ozone depleting substances (ODS). VCSA has developed eligibility requirements for ODS methodologies and projects, giving the green light for investment in activities that destroy ODS and thus prevent their emissions to the atmosphere. The destruction of ODS such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) is not covered by either the Montreal or Kyoto Protocols. Although many of the ODS controlled by the Montreal Protocol have high global warming potential in addition to their ozone depleting potential, the Protocol controls the consumption, production and international trade of ODS, but not emissions of ODS. Releases of ODS residing in banks (such as refrigeration equipment and foams) are not controlled by the Montreal Protocol, and reducing these potential emissions could make a significant future contribution to addressing climate change. Discussion on the issue of mobilizing funds for the environmentally sound destruction of ODS banks is ongoing under the Montreal Protocol, and a workshop on this issue is being convened by the Ozone Secretariat on 14 June 2010, immediately prior to the 30th meeting of the Open-ended Working Group, in Bangkok, Thailand.


Link to further information

VCS press release



Haiti has requested the application of Decision IX/9 of the Montreal Protocol as a measure to avoid obsolete ODS technologies being imported into Haiti during its recovery period, or in the future.


Link to further information

Montreal Protocol website



As part of its ongoing efforts to promote eco-friendly sports, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has announced a partnership with the Indian Premier League (IPL) to reduce its carbon footprint. According to UNEP, under the partnership, the IPL will increasingly offset its games' emissions and green its operations, from waste management to energy efficiency and water use. UNEP will assist the IPL in achieving climate neutrality, supporting its efforts to reduce emissions through the introduction of renewable energy and to compensate for emissions, as well as with green merchandizing. The partnership begins on 12 March with the opening of the IPL's 45-day season. The IPL will promote UNEP initiatives including the Climate Neutral Network, the Billion Tree Campaign and World Environment Day.


Link to further information

UNEP press release, 22 January 2010



On 19 January 2010, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova launched the Education for All Global Monitoring Report 2010 at UN Headquarters in New York, US. At the report's launch, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stressed the fundamental right to education, which he said should not be based on wealth, gender, race, ethnicity or language. The report points out that about 72 million children worldwide are still out of school, as a result of countries' slower economic growth and rising poverty, which increases marginalization in education. The report also points out that girls are often the first to feel the effects. In Pakistan and Uganda, for example, climate-related shocks result in far more girls being taken out of school than boys. The report indicates that cross-country research on past economic crises and climate events shows that the effects of shocks on schooling tend to be more pronounced in low income countries than in middle-income countries. Often, the children of the poorest households are most likely to suffer adverse consequences with regard to education, health and nutrition, and poverty tends to persist across generations.


UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova noted that there is a financing gap of US$16 billion per year to reach the education goal and urged donor countries and the G20 group of developed and developing countries to scale up aid needed.


Links to further information

UNESCO press release

UN News Centre, 19 January 2010

UN Secretary-General speech



On 14 January 2010, the UN released its State of the World's Indigenous Peoples' Report with the Chair of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) Victoria Tauli-Corpuz describing the poverty situation of indigenous peoples in both developed and developing countries. The report provides disaggregated data that shows that indigenous persons often suffer from inadequate nutrition, lack of productive resources, limited access to education and health care, and vulnerability to environmental pollution and climate change despite their carbon neutral lifestyles – particularly in the Arctic and Pacific islands. The report highlights that the future of indigenous peoples is closely linked to solutions to the biodiversity loss and climate change crises.


The report indicates that there are about 370 million indigenous peoples worldwide, which comprises five per cent of the world's population and one-third of the world's 900 million extremely poor rural people. Data show that indigenous peoples' life expectancy is up to 20 years lower than non-indigenous, and that indigenous communities have higher levels of maternal and infant mortality, malnutrition, malaria and tuberculosis, and other diseases.

On the same day, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) hosted a meeting with 16 indigenous representatives to prepare for the 20th anniversary of UNDP's flagship Human Development Report. The meeting discussed how the concept of human development could encompass issues related to self-determination, cultural preservation, identity and spirituality, as well as the close connection of environmental integrity and well-being of indigenous peoples.  


Links to further information

UN Press Conference on State of the World's Indigenous Peoples' Report
UNDP Newsroom

The report



The UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) has launched the Fund for Gender Equality, which will provide grants to support initiatives worldwide to empower women and to promote their political participation and property rights. The Fund, financially supported by the Governments of Spain and Norway, will provide US$68 million dollars to accelerate ongoing initiatives on the ground. Initiatives emphasized should support Government and civil society partnerships, and focus on vulnerable women including indigenous women, high-risk groups and those affected by HIV/AIDS, as well as women who are small farmers facing food insecurity and exposed to the negative effects of climate change. 


The first tranche of the Fund, totaling US$9 million, will benefit 27 initiatives across 26 countries, including support to women in the informal sector in Cameroon, Egypt and the Philippines and promoting political participation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Dominican Republic, Uganda, Morocco and in the Pacific Islands.


Links to further information

UN News Centre

UNIFEM press release



The Carbon Investment Funds (CIF) have announced the extension of a deadline, to 1 February 2010, for eligible countries to submit expressions of interest to participate in the first projects to be funded by the Forest Investment Program (FIP). An Expert Group will be invited to recommend five pilots to the Sub-Committee and a list of up to three additional countries to be considered should funds become available to finance additional pilots or should some of the selected pilots prove not to be feasible.


Link to further information

FIP pilot programs



The World Bank and Daiwa Securities Group announced the issuance of green bonds to support projects for low-carbon development, designed specifically for investors in Japan. World Bank green bonds support World Bank-funded projects that are designed to tackle the causes and consequences of climate change in the developing world. The types of projects that may be supported by these bonds include alternative energy installations, funding for new technologies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reforestation, watershed management and flood protection. To date, the World Bank has issued the equivalent of approximately US$960 million of green bonds.

Link to further information

World Bank press release



The World Bank issued a discussion paper, and is seeking comments, on Monitoring and Reporting on Financial Flows Related to Climate Change. The discussion paper first focuses on tracking, monitoring and reporting various types of flows and then looks at possible ways of tracking additionality in ODA flows only, with the aim of stimulating the discussion within the World Bank Group and its partners on this issue.

The study on monitoring financial flows for climate change has been prepared by World Bank staff in consultation with UNFCCC and OECD. Feedback and comments are requested by 9 February 2010, and should be sent to

Link to further information

Monitoring and reporting on financial flows related to climate change


The Ozone Secretariat has released the report of the 21st Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, which convened in Port Ghalib, Egypt, 4-8 November 2009. The report is available in all UN languages.

Link to further information

MOP-21 report


The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) OzonAction Branch has marked the global phase-out of the production of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and halons on 1 January 2010, with the release of video messages. The messages, from ministers, key officials, industries, academia and civil society, reflect on this defining achievement and hopes for the future.  

Link to further information

OzonAction website

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