Tiempo Climate Newswatch
Priorities for Nepal
The Blue Carbon Portal brings together the latest knowledge and resources on the role of oceans as carbon sinks.
WalkIt provides walking routes between user-defined points in selected British cities, with an estimate of the carbon savings.
Joto Afrika is a series of printed briefings and online resources about adapting to climate change in sub-Saharan Africa.
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The Tiempo Climate Cyberlibrary was developed by Mick Kelly and Sarah Granich on behalf of the Stockholm Environment Institute and the International Institute for Environment and Development, with sponsorship from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.
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Climate change is a challenge to Nepal. In a country that is already under considerable environmental stress, coupled with a weak economy, a lack of institutional capacity, a large rural population and a high dependence on natural resources, climate change will exert additional pressure on the ecological and social systems.
Steps towards mitigating climate change impacts became visible only after the second half of the 1990s even though Nepal signed the climate treaty in 1992.
Preparation of the Initial National Communication (2.7Mb download) was one of the very first accomplishments. Ratification of the Kyoto Protocol and establishment of the Designated National Authority to develop and manage the national strategy on the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) are some of Nepal's successful efforts towards fulfilling the international commitment. Developing national programmes, as well as including climate in national policies, is next on the agenda.
The Alternative Energy Promotion Centre is promoting clean technologies such as biogas, micro-hydro and solar. Climate Change Network Nepal is working on awareness generation and capacity strengthening. The PREGA project has been instrumental in furthering the CDM.
The CDM represents an attractive opportunity for furthering sustainable development goals while simultaneously mitigating emissions. Its constraints, however, should not be overlooked. High transaction costs for project preparation and documentation and mainstreaming of CDM in development planning are some of the areas of concerns for a country like Nepal.
Nepal, of late, has gradually recognized the need for enhancing the adaptive capacity of vulnerable communities. Some adaptation measures are already underway. Adaptation to climate change, however, is expensive and a gigantic task. Nepal should ensure adequate funding from the Adaptation Fund and other sources.
There is a crucial need for progress in three areas.
First, innovative means of promoting emissions reductions, particularly in the natural resource, transport and industry sectors, including tourism, and at the community level should be explored.
Second, adaptive capacity can be enhanced by development aimed at improving the livelihoods, living conditions and access to resources of those likely to experience the worst impacts. It is time to mainstream climate adaptation into development planning and ongoing sectoral decision making.
Finally, there is a need for the implementation of favourable policies, institutional set-ups and education and outreach programmes, as well as capacity building for the government, project developers, academic institutions and all civil society so that everyone can respond effectively to the threat of climate change.
Rakshya Thapa, GPO 146, Kathmandu, Nepal. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the Web
Tiempo Climate Newswatch has published a series of articles on Nepal:
A special issue of the bulletin Tiempo on Nepal can downloaded in Acrobat format in low resolution (0.9Mb) or high resolution (4.6Mb). Finally, the Tiempo Climate Cyberlibrary maintains a selected list of websites covering climate change and mountainous areas.
General Electric plans to cut solar installation costs by half
Project 90 by 2030 supports South African school children and managers reduce their carbon footprint through its Club programme
Bath & North East Somerset Council in the United Kingdom has installed smart LED carriageway lighting that automatically adjusts to light and traffic levels
The United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the American Public Gardens Association are mounting an educational exhibit at Longwood Gardens showing the link between temperature and planting zones
The energy-efficient Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers hotel is powered by renewable and sustainable sources, including integrated solar photovoltaics and guest-powered bicycles
El Hierro, one of the Canary Islands, plans to generate 80 per cent of its energy from renewable sources
The green roof on the Remarkables Primary School in New Zealand reduces stormwater runoff, provides insulation and doubles as an outdoor classroom
The Weather Info for All project aims to roll out up to five thousand automatic weather observation stations throughout Africa
SolSource turns its own waste heat into electricity or stores it in thermal fabrics, harnessing the sun's energy for cooking and electricity for low-income families
The Wave House uses vegetation for its architectural and environmental qualities, and especially in terms of thermal insulation
The Mbale compost-processing plant in Uganda produces cheaper fertilizer and reduces greenhouse gas emissions
At Casa Grande, Frito-Lay has reduced energy consumption by nearly a fifth since 2006 by, amongst other things, installing a heat recovery system to preheat cooking oil
Tiempo Climate Newswatch