By Staff Reporter
Africa needs to do more to access benefits of the clean development mechanism (CDM), and more is needed in terms of donor support, representatives of the five implementing agencies of the Nairobi Framework aimed at spreading the CDM concept said.
The delegates made the statement at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) conference currently underway in Nusa Dua in Bali, Indonesia.
There are 850 clean development projects in 49 developing countries, but only 23 of those projects are in Africa. An expected 200 such projects are to be registered worldwide.
The CDM is expected to generate more than 2.6 billion certified emission reductions (tradable CERs) by the time the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol ends in 2012, each equivalent to one ton of carbon dioxide.
“It’s time that the benefits of this important Kyoto Protocol mechanism were expanded in Africa,” said Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the UNFCC.
Under the CDM, projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to sustainable development, can earn tradable certified emission reduction credits (CERs).
Countries with a commitment under the Kyoto Protocol can use the CERs to meet a portion of their obligations under the protocol.
CDM projects in Africa only account for 2.6 percent of all CDM projects worldwide.
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the World Bank and the African Development Bank, as well as the UNFCC secretariat have joined forces to implement the Nairobi Framework to bring to life the aspirations of the parties to scale up CDM for Africa.
“UNDP considers climate change to hit at the heart of its development mission. Climate change threatens to seriously undermine efforts to eliminate poverty and reach the Millennium Development Goals, particularly in the least developed countries,” said Yannick Glemarec, Executive Coordinator of the UNDP for the Global Environment Facility.
The first concrete outcome under the Nairobi Framework is a joint UNDP-UNEP six-country CDM capacity development project in sub-Saharan Africa initiated in September.
The project – managed by a UNDP regional project coordinator based in Addis Abiba – covers Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Tanzania and Zambia.
The governments of Spain, Sweden and Finland have contributed a total of US$1.5 billion to the project.
“In Africa, efforts to capture CDM benefits are accelerating, supported by a number of individuals and joint UN efforts. Overcoming the complexity of the CDM and general investment barriers, however, cannot be done overnight, but our sustained efforts are producing results,” said John Christenssen, head of UNEP RISCOE Centre based in Denmark.