Friday, October 2, 2015

Zambia’s INDC targets an estimated 38,000Gg carbon emission reduction

 By Friday Phiri

 LUSAKA, Zambia (PAMACC News) The successful implementation of Zambia’s INDC will result in an estimated total emission reduction of 38,000GgCO2eq which translates to 47% (internationally supported efforts) against 2010 as a base year, according to the country’s submitted plan to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change-(UNFCCC).
According to the document however, the targeted reduction is conditional and subject to the availability of international support in form of finance, technology and capacity building.

“This emission reduction is conditional and subject to the availability of international support in form of finance, technology and capacity building”, reads the INDC document which has an estimated implementation budget of US$ 50 billion by the year 2030.

Out of the total budgetary amount, USD 35 billion is expected to come from external sources while $15 billion will be mobilized from domestic sources.

The Southern African country’s INDC affirms that Climate variability and change has become a major threat to sustainable development with the “country already experiencing climate induced hazards which include drought and dry spells, seasonal and flash floods and extreme temperatures."

Some of these hazards, especially the droughts and floods have increased in frequency and intensity over the past few decades and have adversely impacted food and water security, water quality, energy and livelihoods of the people, especially in rural communities.

And talking about energy, the need for adaptation is a matter of life and death considering the water shortage crisis at the Kariba Dam the country is facing which has led to reduced electricity generation affecting both small-scale and large businesses.

Recent climate trends based on records from 1960 to 2003 indicate that mean annual temperature has increased by 1.3oC, since 1960, an average rate of 0.34oC per decade. On the other hand, the mean rainfall over Zambia has decreased by an average rate of 1.9 mm/month (2.3%) per decade since 1960.

The future trends in the country are towards a higher average temperature, a possible decrease in total rainfall, and some indication of heavy events of rainfall.

An assessment of potential climate impacts shows that they will seriously undermine the efforts to improve the livelihoods of Zambians if left unaddressed, with an aggregated estimated total GDP loss by sector in the range of USD 4,330-5,440 million.

In view of these challenges, Zambia has in the recent past developed various climate change-related policies, strategies, projects and programs in response to climate change impacts.

These include: the National Policy on Environment (NPE, 2007); the National Climate Change Response Strategy (NCCRS, 2010); National Forestry Policy of 2014; National Energy Policy of 2008, The National Agriculture Policy of 2014 and Transport Policy of 2002; National Strategy for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+, 2015); Second National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NBSAP2); the National Adaptation Plan of Action on Climate Change (NAPA, 2007); Technology Needs Assessment (TNA, 2013); Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs, 2014); Second National Communication (SNC, 2015).

These policies, strategies, programmes and projects are aligned with the Revised Sixth National Development Plan (RSDNP) and the Vision 2030 which promotes “A prosperous middle income country by 2030”, both of which support development of a low carbon and climate-resilient development pathway.

Similarly, adaptation measures identified based on vulnerability assessment of seven key economic sectors (agriculture, water, forestry, energy, wildlife, infrastructure and health) comprise three goals/programs that have strong synergies with mitigation.

These are: Adaptation of strategic productive systems (agriculture, forests, wildlife and water); Adaptation of strategic infrastructure and health systems; and Enhanced capacity building, research, technology transfer and finance.

And it is here that the climate agreement at COP 21 in December would come in handy.

Africa is pushing for technology transfer and proper financing mechanisms in the new agreement based on the equity of approach premise that rich countries should assist poorer countries to transition their economies to climate friendly production technologies as well as provide assistance to cope with the impacts of climate change on economies and livelihoods.

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