Tuesday, 29 December 2015

[conserveafrica] SciDev.Net weekly update: Review of the year, Low-cost invention boosts solar power, and more


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Editor's picks: Opinions and special features in 2015



Editor's picks: Opinions and special features in 2015

Read about the ten pieces that did most to challenge and reflect on the most relevant global issues this year.

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Sunday, 27 December 2015

FW: UNDP-UNEP Poverty-Environment Initiative Newsletter Issue 21 (November - December 2015)

Dear colleagues and partners of the Poverty-Environment Initiative,

We are pleased to share with you the 21st issue of the UNDP-UNEP Poverty-Environment Initiative Newsletter.  

To access the Newsletter online, please click on the hyperlink below:

Poverty-Environment Initiative Newsletter Issue 21

We hope you enjoy learning about the latest news from the Poverty-Environment Initiative.

On behalf of the Poverty-Environment Initiative Team,

Yours truly,

Michael Stanley-Jones

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

New Climate Economy: December Update

NCE Update: December 2015

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Global Commission made the economic case for high ambition at COP21

The Global Commission on the Economy and Climate welcomed the historic Paris Agreement. It should deliver the strong market signal for a zero-carbon future that is essential to shift investments and drive innovation. Shortly before the negotiations began in Paris, the Global Commission issued a formal statement in the Financial Times calling for a successful Agreement as a vital opportunity to deliver both climate action and growth. The statement can also be found here.  At COP21 in Paris, 15 Global Commissioners presented the NCE messages in over 35 events, highlighting the economic benefits to strong climate action. 


Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala: Landscape restoration is critical to deliver climate action


Watch the Video

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, member of the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate, gave keynote address at COP21's Global Landscapes Forum. There she launched a new working paper on Restoring and Protecting Agricultural and Forest Landscapes and Increasing Agricultural Productivity.

In her remarks, she noted that a staggering one-third of all agriculture landscapes are now degraded, mostly in developing countries. And a net 12 million hectares (ha) continue to be degraded yearly. But commitment to change is growing. Significant regional achievements are being implemented, such as Initiative 20x20, through which seven Latin American countries and partners have pledged to bring 20 million ha of land into restoration by 2020, and the Africa Climate-Smart Agriculture Alliance, which aims to engage 6 million smallholders by 2021 35 African countries submitted climate pledges at COP21 that mention land use restoration, and through the newly launched AFR100 effort, 10 African countries have committed at least 31 million ha of land for forest landscape restoration.

Our working paper finds that economically feasible land use interventions could provide more resource-efficient, climate-compatible growth and resilience, while also providing 15–35% (3.3-9.0 Gt CO2e) of the total emissions reductions needed to reach a 2°C climate pathway by 2030. The paper also emphasises the importance of restoration for poverty alleviation and the potential for international and multi-stakeholder partnerships to help protect high-carbon natural forests.


Report: Raising energy efficiency standards to the global best

Recent research from the New Climate Economy (NCE) shows that raising energy efficiency standards in the G20 and around the world could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 6.9 Gt CO2e per year by 2030, more than the current annual emissions of the United States. These emissions reductions would be accompanied by economic savings in appliances, buildings, industry, and transport. According to the IEA, enhanced energy efficiency investments could boost cumulative economic output by US$18 trillion to 2035, increasing growth by 0.25–1.1% per year. Read our report.


Reports on Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform

Two recent papers by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and NCE identify the lessons learned from past attempts to reform fossil fuel subsidies, explore why progress has been slow, and outline the principles for successful reform. The global paper, Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform: From Rhetoric to Reality, explores the lessons of 15 countries around the world that have launched or accelerated fossil fuel subsidy reforms. The second paper, Fossil fuel subsidy reform in sub-Saharan Africa: from rhetoric to reality, focuses on 5 sub-Saharan African countries that have undertaken fossil fuel subsidy reforms. 


Good reads for a new climate economy

The economic consequences of climate change
A OECD report. The economic consequences of climate change, provides a new quantitative assessment of the consequences of climate change on economic growth through 2060 and beyond. It focuses on how climate change affects different drivers of growth, including labour productivity and capital supply, in different sectors across the world. The sectoral and regional analysis shows that while the impacts of climate change spread across all sectors and all regions, the largest negative consequences are projected to be found in the health and agricultural sectors, with damages especially strong in Africa and Asia.

Empty promises: G20 subsidies to oil, gas and coal production
A report by ODI and Oil Change International, Empty promises: G20 subsidies to oil, gas and coal production, documents the scale and structure of fossil fuel production subsidies in the G20 countries for the first time. The evidence points to a publicly financed bailout for some of the world's largest, most carbon-intensive and polluting companies. It finds that G20 countries are providing $452 billion in subsidies a year for fossil fuel production, creating a 'lose-lose' scenario. By directing large volumes of finance into high-carbon assets that cannot be exploited without catastrophic climate effects, they are also diverting investment from economical low-carbon alternatives such as solar, wind and hydro-power.

Climate Action in Megacities 3.0
The C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) and research partner Arup released Climate Action in Megacities (CAM 3.0), a groundbreaking and definitive assessment of how the world's leading mayors have taken on the urgent challenge of climate change. Since the last major COP in Copenhagen, C40 cities have taken 10,000 climate actions – a doubling of actions in just six years – and have committed to reduce their CO2 emissions by 3 Gt CO2 by 2030, equivalent to the annual carbon output of India. Furthermore, decisions taken by global cities to invest in low carbon development over the next 15 years have the potential to avoid locking in a total of 45 Gt of CO2, or eight times the total current annual emissions of the United States.

Zero Carbon Latin America: A Pathway for Net Decarbonisation of the Regional Economy by Mid-Century
The objective of the analysis presented by the UNEP DTU partnership in this report is to visualize a pathway for complete decarbonisation of the Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) regional economy by mid-century. A zero carbon direction, made possible by the availability of new technologies and the shifting economic context, would present more of an opportunity and less of a burden for economic development and for regional integration. It would also contribute substantially to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals. However, achieving the zero carbon goal will ultimately depend on the ability to navigate and address the substantial barriers built up over time by business-as-usual behaviours and policies. 


New Climate Economy in the media

Thanks to the worldwide attention on COP21, the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate and its New Climate Economy project had one of its best months ever in the media. Altogether, our coverage generated over 3,500 media articles in over 68 countries. For a full top hits list of our media coverage and op-eds, please click here. Here are several highlights.


Media articles


Need facts about the new climate economy for your presentations? Look no further.



If you would like to use our research to build your own presentations on the economic benefits of ambitious climate action, please download and use our PowerPoint here. Just be sure to cite the original sources!



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