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Kenya renews commitment for Climate Change action plan at COP24

The Kenyan delegation to the ongoing COP24 talks in in Katowice, Poland, is led by Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary, Keriako Tobiko. Photo/COURTESY.

KATOWICE, Poland, Dec 12 – The Kenyan delegation to the ongoing 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) commonly known as COP 24, have affirmed the Government’s commitment to ensure a speedy implementation of climate change action plans.

The Kenyan delegation to the ongoing COP24 talks in in Katowice, Poland, is led by Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary, Keriako Tobiko and will be championing local and Africa focused agendas at the crucial convention.

At the talks, the Kenyan delegation, Tobiko further assured, will be speaking in one voice with the rest of the African Group of Negotiators (AGN) to UNFCCC; to ensure a continental unity of purpose and the addressing of Africa’s special needs.

Speaking in Katowice, Tobiko who addressed a Kenya COP24 Side Event for international delegates attending the talks, shared Kenya’s experience in developing the National Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP).

The recently developed four-year NCCAP (2018-2022) plan, aligned with the global climate action plans as per the Paris Agreement, he said provides an actionable plan, for the local environment. In 2015, Kenya submitted and is actively implementing its NDCs commitment to a 30% GreenHouseGases (GHG) emission reduction by 2030.

“Under the National Climate Change Action Plan, we have domesticated our Nationally determined contributions (NDCs) which are at the heart of the Paris Agreement. The Kenyan NDCs embody our commitment to reduce the national emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change,” Tobiko said.

The Kenyan economy, Tobiko reiterated is highly dependent on climate sensitive sectors such as agriculture, tourism, water and energy. Unmanaged, climate change, he said, poses potential economic consequences including lower productivity in agriculture, stresses on health, biodiversity, water supply systems and lower GDP.

In recognition of the serious threats posed by climate change, the government, Tobiko said through various agencies including the National Treasury has been leading the process of developing instruments for climate proofing vulnerable sectors of the economy.

By enhancing mitigation and adaptation measures including the development of the NCCAP, the government, has also focused on the development of the framework of the National Policy on Climate Finance, Climate Public Expenditure and Budget Reviews (CPEBR), Development Climate Change Budget Coding for tracking and reporting climate finance flows and expenditure and the establishment of requisite structures for the private sector to support government efforts in financing both mitigation and adaptation actions.

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“This we plan to do through issuance of Sovereign Green Bonds, establishment of the National Treasury as the National Designated Authority (NDA) for Green Climate Fund (GCF), establishment of the Climate Change Fund (CCF) and the Disaster Risk Financing Strategy all aimed at cushioning the economy from fiscal risks arising from the effects of climate related shocks and natural disasters,” Tobiko reiterated.

The effects of Climate Change on developing countries, vulnerable members of the community, women, youth, indigenous persons and persons living with disability Tobiko stressed need to be urgently addressed to guarantee environmental sustainability and quality of human life.

Focusing on Kenya’s experience in the development of the first and second National Climate Change Action Plan, Tobiko advised delegates at the Kenya COP24 side event on the need to foster political commitment and leadership in matters climate change.

African countries including Kenya, he acknowledged will also require bilateral and multilateral support from the developed world to address their special needs. Such support he noted will include financial and technical capacity building.

COP24 is the informal name for the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The UNFCCC is a “Rio Convention”, one of three adopted at the “Rio Earth Summit” in 1992. The UNFCCC entered into force on 21 March 1994. Today, it has near-universal membership. The countries that have ratified the Convention are called Parties to the Convention. Preventing “dangerous” human interference with the climate system is the ultimate aim of the UNFCCC.

The Conference of the Parties (COP) is the supreme body of the UNFCCC Convention. It consists of the representatives of the Parties to the Convention. It holds its sessions every year. The COP takes decisions which are necessary to ensure the effective implementation of the provisions of the Convention and regularly reviews the implementation of these provisions.

In accordance with a decision of the 22nd Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Climate Convention (COP22) in Marrakesh in November 2016, the successive climate summit is currently underway in Poland and closes on Friday. Poland was selected to host this event within the framework of the Eastern European Group (EEG).

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