Friday, 31 October 2014

IPCC preparing 'most important' document on climate change

IPCC preparing 'most important' document on climate change

Scientists and officials are meeting in Denmark to edit what's been termed the "most important document" on climate change.
The IPCC Synthesis Report will summarise the causes and impacts of - and solutions to - rising temperatures.
It will be the bedrock of talks on a new global climate deal.
But there are concerns that political battles could neuter the final summary.
Over the past 13 months, the IPCC has released three major reports on the physical science, the impacts and the potential methods of dealing with climate change.
On Sunday they will release the Synthesis Report. This new study is meant to take the most important elements of all three and blend them into something new. It is not meant to be a cut-and-paste exercise.
"The new thing is there is going to be a stand-alone document that will be the most important for policymakers for the next few years," Prof Arthur Petersen, a UCL researcher and member of the Dutch government's team at the Copenhagen meeting, told BBC News.
"It will be the document for the Paris summit."
The UN hopes to deliver a new global treaty on climate change at a meeting in the French capital at the end of 2015. The IPCC Synthesis Report will, in the eyes of many, play a critical role in that.

AWF: Empowering Africans to Be Guardians of Wildlife



AWF: Empowering Africans to Be Guardians of Wildlifested: 10/30/2014 11:23 am EDT Updated: 10/30/2014 11:59 am EDT

In the last part of a three-part interview series with Patrick Bergin, CEO of African Wildlife Foundation, we discuss the real value of empowering struggling Africans living near wildlife and also the direct link to a decrease in poaching in those areas.

In part one of this interview, I caught up with Bergin just a couple days before he headed off to Asia to co-host a China-Africa dialogue on wildlife and sustainability. The interview ended with an idea that has the potential be a game changer for the illegal wildlife trade.


We will never win the war on poaching unless we get the Asian demand countries on side through education and legislation; however, that will take patience and a whole lot of political will, and in the meantime Africa's wildlife is haemorrhaging. An elephant is killed every 15 minutes, and a rhino every nine hours, and in part two of this interview series I raised the contentious issue of the South African government wanting to legalize the rhino horn trade.

You can't get the genie back in the bottle," says Bergin. "Even with the elephant ivory trade there have been unintended consequences, and to take rhino, which is down to such low numbers, and embark on this grand experiment, it just has risks that people should not be glib about.

Morally speaking, if the rhino horn trade were to be legalized, we're dealing not only with Asia's insatiable demand for status products, but also a lot of people who truly believe rhino horn (made up of keratin, the stuff of fingernails) has medicinal healing properties. Any kind of legalization of the rhino horn trade would amount to endorsing rhino horn as medicine, which it's not. Very sick people could literally stake their lives on this animal product, and that could be fatal.

Statistically speaking, the numbers don't match up. In a recent report published byOSCAP, it shows that if just 1 percent of the consuming Asian nations used five grams of rhino horn per annum, they would require 372.25 tons. Conservatively speaking, according to the same OSCAP report, the harvesting of horns from farmed rhinos would yield around 15 tons annually, a shortage on demand by about 357 tons.


Speaking as an African, isn't it about time all Africans stop pandering to greed and think long term about what is best for Africa? Because right now, at a frighteningly fast pace, we are losing our natural heritage to both poaching and foreign economic development and extraction of our natural resources.

Creating sustainable livelihoods for Africans living near wildlife is a business model African Wildlife Foundation has been shaping for more than 15 years, and they are successfully harnessing the power of impact investments to save wildlife and help people. Through their subsidiary, African Wildlife Capital (AWC), they are using social capital to fund profitable small to medium-sized conservation enterprises.

"One of the things that has always bothered me is tokenism," says Bergin. "Where you get, for example, a game lodge that puts glossy brochures in all the rooms to say they work with the local communities. But if you scratch below the surface it's really often no more than just a token. Guests are paying hundreds of dollars a night to sleep at that lodge, but if you look at 'community benefit,' most often it is trivial, maybe they employ a local taxi driver or something like that. That's not sharing with the community. Rather than tokenism, AWF's model is to ensure communities have real equity in the business."

In the past, investors would come into an area and recruit people for minimum wage. AWF wanted to flip that on its head and do business the right way.

"We value the inputs the investors bring to the table, such as expertise and marketing channels, but the community also brings things to the table. They own the land, they have the political goodwill, and they are the ones that can keep the area safe for wildlife. So let's value all of these things together and move forward as a joint venture and sustainable business."

All of the businesses funded through AWC have to have a strong conservation angle, such as saving habitat and ultimately preserving wildlife. Bergin then went on to cite an example of how empowerment of Africans living near wildlife is also a deterrent to poaching.

We work on the east side of Tarangire National Park in Tanzania. The east side of the park used to suffer from poaching, and it used to suffer from damaging wildfires every year. And it was because the park was taking a typical approach to protecting wildlife through paramilitary security. When we started engaging with the communities on the east side of the park and helping them generate revenue by protecting wildlife, the Maasai elders put out the word, and it greatly reduced the number of fires in the park. Poaching on the east side of the park also collapsed. The community is now on the side of conservation.

But the extent of poverty is so far reaching, is it solvable? Does AWF prioritize empowerment of African communities alongside demand-reduction campaigns in Asia or frontline protection of wildlife?

"Long term we absolutely do. It has been our approach for many years, and when I first joined AWF it was a critical part of the community programme. Just going back to the business model, it's really important to get the model right. The way that we structure these business deals is we make sure that the community retains ownership of the land and buildings as fixed assets, and that they receive a top line percentage of the gross revenue, because otherwise the reward for communities to protect their wildlife is too small and too distant."

Since I returned to my African homeland two months ago to write stories from the frontline of the poaching crisis I have seen firsthand, in both South Africa and Mozambique, that if you get communities on side, you save wildlife. Part of the solution is educating the villages from which poachers are recruited as to the real value wildlife could bring to them long term.


Photo credit: Dex Kotze /

Economic growth is also the highest single objective for African governments, and it's imperative that we show the link between conservation and economic success. This is one more tool in the box to encourage African governments to take effective measures to save what little wildlife we have left. We need to tell this story again and again, so that eventually it becomes part of business DNA.

And what is good for Africans is good for Africa.

Jamie Joseph is a writer and environmental activist currently writing stories from the frontline of Africa's poaching crisis. Follow onFacebook and Twitter.

AWF - Conservation Investment - How it works

Based on the various conservation enterprises that AWF have been involved in over the years, the revenue generated from those is generating on average about $2million annually for local communities across a whole spectrum of landscapes. For example, a community-owned lodge is owned by communities (they own all fixed assets) and they own the land the lodge sits on. A tour operator is brought in as a partner to help run the marketing and high-end operations of the facility. Community members, as partners and part-owners, benefit as 1) members of the local community are hired as employees at the lodge, 2) a percentage of the revenue generated (from bed night fees) by the lodge goes to the community, and 3) a conservation fee that tourists pay for accessing the community land goes to the community. Spread out across all the different community lodges and other types of enterprises that AWF has engaged in with local communities, these are helping generate this individual and community income.

Satao Elerai. Satao Elerai is a community-owned lodge that sits on a 5,000-acre conservation area in southern Kenya, part of a wildlife corridor between Kenya's Amboseli National Park and Tanzania's Mt. Kilimanjaro Reserve. Photo credit: Philip Muruthi/African Wildlife Foundation

Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge. Sabyinyo is also a community-owned lodge near Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park, home to the critically endangered mountain gorilla. With income from the lodge, the community has been able to build 10 school classrooms, 20 houses, and six communal water tanks, among other investments. Photo credit: Governor's Camp Collection

Rungwe Avocado Company. Rungwe in southern Tanzania was African Wildlife Capital's (AWC's) first investee. Its operations are located near an important montane grassland ecosystem and the business, via a "conservation covenant" with AWC, is limited agricultural sprawl in the area while improving livelihoods for 2,000 local farmers through an outgrower scheme. Photo credit: Carolin Schmidt

Fwd: water-l digest: October 30, 2014

Subject: water-l digest: October 30, 2014
From: "Water Issues Announcement List digest" <>
Reply-To: "Water Issues Announcement List" <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 2014 00:00:08 -0500

WATER-L Digest for Thursday, October 30, 2014.

1. Innovating Water Technology & Governance? And how to finance it? Insights & some answers on 5 Nov !
2. Water Update - 30 October 2014 - Water Policy & Practice

Subscribe to all other IISD Reporting Services' free newsletters and lists for environment and sustainable development policy professionals at

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Sören Bauer" <>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2014 03:20:25 -0500
Subject: Innovating Water Technology & Governance? And how to finance it? Insights & some answers on 5 Nov !
Dear colleagues,

We are pleased to provide you with a final update on the EIP Water Conference 2014 scheduled for Wednesday 5th November in Barcelona and held under the theme "Connecting Innovation Demand and Supply":

- Over 500 water-innovation interested participants have registered already and registration for the Conference has been closed.

- The good news is that you can follow all sessions online, via our all day live–streaming starting on 5 November at 9 am Barcelona time. Please sign up here:

- The Conference programme  has been updated once again and we are pleased to present a great line up of high-level speakers ( and thought-provoking sessions (

- Here are just three highlights from the day, among many others:

1. During the "EIP Water auction" starting at 10.50 am four EU Member States - Spain, the UK, the Netherlands and Slovenia - will present their water management challenges, and EIP Water Action Groups as well as the audience are expected to provide innovative proposals and solutions.

2. "How corporate stewardship is driving innovation in water" starting at 3.30 pm will see the presentation of the CDP Global Water Report 2014 which explores the increasing recognition that mismanagement of water can result in significant business failure while effective and innovative action can result in sustainable growth:

3. In "Resolving the bottlenecks and barriers to water innovation in the EU" at 4 pm high-level presenters from industry, academia, financial institutions and non-profits will convene on the stage for a debate on bottlenecks and barriers to innovation in water and what we should do about them

We hope you will be able to join online and look forward to meeting you virtually!

We will also live-tweet from the Conference with our recently established twitter account @eip_water and will use #EIPWater2014 for the Conference- follow and engage with us!

Furthermore, the EIP Water Conference 2014 will mark the launch of the 3rd call for expressions of commitment to establish an EIP Water Action Group. This new call will have a particular focus on actors from eastern European countries and on those EIP Water priority areas which are currently underrepresented. More information will be available online as of 5 November on

We would like to thank all EIP Water stakeholders, friends and conference partners for their continued commitment and support, and look forward to welcoming you to Barcelona!

Best wishes,

Sören Bauer
EIP Water Secretariat
Communication adviser

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: IISD Reporting Services <>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2014 12:26:06 -0500
Subject: Water Update - 30 October 2014 - Water Policy & Practice
Having trouble viewing this email? Please try our Browser Version.
  Water Update - Water Policy & Practice
A compilation of items recently posted to the Water Policy & Practice knowledgebase
Latest News - 30 October 2014
CGIAR, UNU Study Reveals Cost of Salt Build-up on Agricultural Lands
Read More: CGIAR, UNU Study Reveals Cost of Salt Build-up on Agricultural Lands
28_October 2014: A report from the UN and the CGIAR consortium reveals that land degradation due to salt build-up is causing damages in some 75 countries, estimated at more than US$27 billion per year. continued...
Chairs Summarize Six Multi-Stakeholder Partnership Dialogues on SIDS
Read More: Chairs Summarize Six Multi-Stakeholder Partnership Dialogues on SIDS
8_October_2014: The Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States (SIDS) included six multi-stakeholder partnership dialogues aimed at launching new partnerships, sharing successes, and documenting progress on key issues important to SIDS' sustainable development. Summaries from the dialogues' Chairs, issued as a UN General Assembly document of 8 October 2014, highlight the array of partnerships committed to at the conference. continued...
Western Balkans and Turkey Agree to Develop Regional Early Warning System
Read More: Western Balkans and Turkey Agree to Develop Regional Early Warning System
27_October 2014: Representatives from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Serbia and Turkey agreed to establish a region-wide approach to climate change adaptation and disaster resilience at the conclusion of a two-year project, 'Building Resilience to Disasters in Western Balkans and Turkey.' continued...
UN-Water Reports on Stakeholder Dialogue on Water-Energy-Food Nexus, Post-2015 Agenda
Read More: UN-Water Reports on Stakeholder Dialogue on Water-Energy-Food Nexus, Post-2015 Agenda
October_2014: UN-Water released a summary report from its fifth annual UN-Water Stakeholder Dialogue, which convened under the theme 'Water, Energy and Food Nexus and the Post-2015 Development Agenda.' The report describes the dialogue's sessions on UN-Water activities on water and energy, the water, energy and food nexus and the post-2015 agenda, and a high-level panel discussion on the integration of the water, energy and food security nexus in the post-2015 agenda. continued...
Workshop Addresses Urban Climate Change Resilience in Southeast Asia
Read More: Workshop Addresses Urban Climate Change Resilience in Southeast Asia
24_October 2014: UN-Habitat participated in a two-day, high-level event examining 'Environment Change and Urbanization in the South East Asia Region.' Commenting on how climate change will affect rapidly urbanizing areas in the region, Nguyen Quang, Director of UN-Habitat Viet Nam, noted that climate change has had "a direct effect on key urban infrastructure such as transportation, water supply and energy, and exacerbates urbanization problems." continued...
Cap-Net Launches Virtual Campus with Pilot IWRM Course
Read More: Cap-Net Launches Virtual Campus with Pilot IWRM Course
14_October 2014: The UN Development Programme (UNDP) Cap-Net has launched a virtual campus as part of its strategy to explore diverse forms of media for capacity development and facilitate collaborative work among Cap-Net's Secretariat, network and other partners. continued...
Adaptation Fund Board Approves Six Projects Totaling US$33 Million
Read More: Adaptation Fund Board Approves Six Projects Totaling US$33 Million
10_October 2014: The Adaptation Fund Board (AFB) has announced it will fund six climate resilience projects, in Costa Rica, India, Kenya and South Africa. The decision represents a doubling in the direct access finance provided by the Fund. In addition, the Board approved almost US$150,000 in South-South grants to provide training on the Fund's accreditation process so that more countries will be able to take advantage of direct access finance. continued...
World Bank Study Tour Introduces Asian Participants to Dutch Flood Management
Read More: World Bank Study Tour Introduces Asian Participants to Dutch Flood Management
8_October_2014: Decision makers and practitioners from Bangladesh, China, the Philippines and Viet Nam participated in a World Bank supported study tour to the Netherlands to learn about water resources management and flood protection. continued...
National Reports to Ramsar COP12 Posted Online
Read More: National Reports to Ramsar COP12 Posted Online
October_2014: Parties to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands have posted their National Reports on implementation, ahead of the 12th meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP12) in 2015. continued...
Senior Arctic Officials Prepare for Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting
Read More: Senior Arctic Officials Prepare for Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting
23_October 2014: The Senior Arctic Officials (SAOs) and Heads of Delegation of Indigenous Permanent Participant organizations of the Arctic Council met to assess overall progress toward the priorities set under the Canadian Chairmanship. SAO Chair, Vincent Rigby, noted that the productive meeting would yield a "rich set of recommendations" for the Arctic Council Ministers to consider. Notably, SAOs approved a report outlining concrete recommendations for reducing woodstove black carbon emissions. continued...
World Resources Forum Discusses Economic and Environmental Linkages
Read More: World Resources Forum Discusses Economic and Environmental Linkages
22_October 2014: The 2014 World Resources Forum (WRF) brought together over 1,000 participants from 40 countries and international organizations to share knowledge and ideas on how to increase resource productivity, promote sustainable consumption and production (SCP) and mitigate climate change, while still maintaining and improving the quality of life for people everywhere. continued...
UN Releases Handbook on Human Rights to Water and Sanitation
Read More: UN Releases Handbook on Human Rights to Water and Sanitation
October_2014: Catarina de Albuquerque, UN Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation, launched a handbook outlining the legal foundations and recognition of human rights to water and sanitation. continued...
Water Policy & Practice Calendar: Current & Upcoming Events
47th Meeting of the GEF Council Washington D.C., US 27 Oct - 30 Oct
Ramsar Convention Regional Pre-COP Meeting – Americas Colombia 27 Oct - 31 Oct
Gender, Water and Development Conference 2014 East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa 3 Nov - 7 Nov
Ramsar Convention Regional Pre-COP Meeting – Asia Siem Reap, Cambodia 3 Nov - 7 Nov
CMS COP 11 Quito, Pichincha, Ecuador 3 Nov - 9 Nov
International Conference on Ecohydrology Yogyakarta (Java), Indonesia 10 Nov - 12 Nov
GEO-XI Geneva, Geneve, Switzerland 13 Nov - 14 Nov
Regional Workshop for NENA countries on Capacity Development to Support National Drought Management Policies Cairo, Al Qahirah, Egypt 17 Nov - 20 Nov
Ramsar Convention Regional Pre-COP Meeting – Africa Hammamet, Nabeul, Tunisia 17 Nov - 21 Nov
Analysis and Management of Changing Risks for Natural Hazards Padua, Italy 18 Nov - 19 Nov
Network of Asian River Basin Organizations (NARBO) 10th Year Celebration Workshop Manila, Philippines 18 Nov - 20 Nov
10th Meeting of the Compliance Committee under the Protocol on Water and Health Geneva, Geneve, Switzerland 24 Nov - 25 Nov
7th Meeting of the Working Group on Water and Health Geneva, Geneve, Switzerland 26 Nov - 27 Nov
First International Environment Forum for Basin Organizations Bangkok (Krung Thep), Thailand 26 Nov - 28 Nov
OECD Global Forum on Environment: New Perspectives on the Water-Energy-Food Nexus Paris, Ile-De-France, France 27 Nov - 28 Nov
 Subscribe to our iCalendar and your computer will gain access to all the events listed in our  Water Policy & Practice  Calendar Learn More | Subscribe )
Please send suggestions for articles to Alice Bisiaux at
Funding for Water Policy & Practice has been provided by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

Water Policy & Practice is a knowledgebase of activities addressing sustainable water and sanitation policy and practice. It was launched in November 2012 by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) Reporting Services, which manages and is fully responsible for the content posted on Water Policy & Practice . Information on United Nations activities is provided in cooperation with the UN system agencies, funds and programmes through the United Nations System Chief Executives Board for Coordination (UN CEB) Secretariat. Click here for further information on Water Policy & Practice


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