|6 December 2010|
|On 3 December 2010, at the Sixteenth Conference of the Parties (COP16) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Cancun, Mexico, the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) convened a side event entitled “Shifting to a Low Carbon and Climate Resilient Development in Asia and the Pacific”, which drew approximately 120 participants from government, civil society and the private sector. The event highlighted concrete steps Asia’s policymakers are making to integrate climate considerations into development processes and build climate resilience.
Dr. Ursula Schaefer-Preuss, Vice President, ADB, opened the event by noting that “aggressive measures are already being taken by countries in the Asia Pacific, but these efforts are often missed in the wider international dialogue.” With the world’s largest climate-vulnerable population, Asia’s efforts to mitigate greenhouse gases and strengthen resiliency deserve more recognition. Representatives from the People’s Republic of China, Indonesia and Pakistan gave presentations that demonstrated where they have made progress and how financial and analytical support could enhance the mainstreaming of climate change into development planning.
A growing source of analytical support in Asia is coming from research on low carbon societies. NIES, together with partner institutes in China, India and elsewhere in Asia, presented low carbon scenarios and visions to achieve low carbon societies. More than a dozen low carbon research collaborations are currently under way at the national and city levels in Asia. Dr. Mikiko Kainuma, Research Section Chief, NIES, attributed the growing interest to policymakers and other stakeholders seeking “a practical tool that can help envision and then realise a low carbon, climate-resilient future in Asia.”
IGES presentations on CDM reform, measuring, reporting and verifying greenhouse emissions, and work as secretariat for the International Research Network for Low Carbon Societies (LCS-RNet), also offered practical recommendations for making those visions tangible in Asia. “Whether it be co-operation on economic analyses, new policy mechanisms like REDD+, or adaptation strategies, we must recognise natural synergies between multilateral finance institutions and strategic research institutions,” noted Professor Hamanaka, Chairman of the Board of IGES. Acting on the need for further collaboration, ADB and IGES signed a letter of intent to enhance cooperation on climate change and environmental management.
The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) was established in 1998 at the initiative of the Government of Japan. IGES conducts strategic policy research on global environmental issues faced by countries in the Asia and the Pacific region.