Climate Finance Governance Effectiveness in Africa

Day 1: Climate Finance Governance Effectiveness in Africa

Talk of the ravaging effects of climate change, and Africa comes into mind: frequent droughts, floods, landslides as well as recurrent conflicts over Africa. In essence, this has been the center of the climate change debate, with due regard to who is responsible for human-induced climate change, the degree of responsibility as well as the mode and degree of intervention to alleviate this challenge. It is in this context that actors in climate finance governance are meeting in Johannesburg to explore these issues, under the auspices of the “Ensuring Climate Finance Effectiveness in Africa”, in Johannesburg, South Africa, from 21-23May 2013. This workshop has been organized by the Heinrich Boll Foundation (HBF), Transparency International Kenya and Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA).

Climate Finance Space in Africa

The first day of the workshop featured presentations capturing different spheres of climate finance in Africa. Of paramount importance were the issues of governance, transparency and accountability, upon which the effectiveness of climate finance governance in Africa. Also, the participation of different players in the climate finance governance domain in Africa was explored, as well as the methodologies that should be embedded in climate finance mechanisms so as to realize climate finance effectiveness, especially with regard to budget tracking.

Climate finance governance

Mr. Kimeu

Mr.Kimeu (Executive Director of TI-Kenya) giving opening remarks

The issue of governance, which is the crux of this workshop, was well elaborated on by the opening remarks made by Transparency International Kenya’s Executive Director, Samuel Kimeu, and this set the context for subsequent deliberations. Some of the challenges besetting climate finance governance in Africa were identified as:

Corruption: Mr. Kimeu singled out corruption as the biggest challenge facing climate finance governance in Africa. This was manifested through lack of transparency, participation as well as monitoring and tracking mechanisms in climate finance management. A case in point: Kenya loses about 30% of its development budget to procurement malpractice!

Policy Capture: The risk of policy capture, whereby some authorities hijack policies to achieve undue influence, was identified as a major issue jeopardizing climate finance governance.

Creative Accounting and reporting: The issue of creative accounting was also put on the crosshairs as many donors were counting aid as part of climate finance.  For example, the Fast Start Finance agreed upon at COP15, as captured in the Copenhagen Accord, was mainly disbursed as loans, with only 43% of the funds being grants.

“You cannot burn my house and give me a loan to rebuild it” – remark from a participant

Lack of participation: the people at the center of the discussion on climate finance governance are the groups most vulnerable to climate change, and they are seldom brought into this discourse. This is a sad reality, and it was agreed upon that it was critical to involve all parties in order to realize climate finance governance.

Bureaucracy: Accessing climate finance, especially from the multilateral funds such as the Adaptation Fund, is a major headache for many countries in Africa. This is due to the sheer bureaucracy involved in accessing these funds, as well as the technical capacity required in preparing applications to be an implementing entity. For example, there are only 5 National Implementing Entities (NIEs).

Lack of capacity: most African countries that need climate finance are unable to access it due lack of sufficient technical capacity required to prepare applications to be National Implementing Entities (NIEs), as is in the case of applying for funds under the Adaptation Fund. For example, Zambia had their application to an NIE turned down because they fronted the Ministry of Finance as the entity, and they were duly informed that this was not a viable entity.

Conclusion

With the context already set, we will explore the Global Climate Finance architecture in the next post.

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What is a carbon foot-print

FAQs on climate change

Carbon Footprint
The total amount of greenhouse gases that are emitted into the atmosphere each year by a person, family, building, organization, or company. A persons carbon footprint includes greenhouse gas emissions from fuel that an individual burns directly, such as by heating a home or riding in a car. It also includes greenhouse gases that come from producing the goods or services that the individual uses, including emissions from power plants that make electricity, factories that make products, and landfills where trash gets sent.

CarbonCycle
All parts (reservoirs) and fluxes of carbon. The cycle is usually thought of as four main reservoirs of carbon interconnected by pathways of exchange. The reservoirs are the atmosphere, terrestrial biosphere (usually includes freshwater systems), oceans, and sediments (includes fossil fuels). The annual movements of carbon, the carbon exchanges between reservoirs, occur because of various chemical, physical, geological, and biological processes. The ocean contains the largest pool of carbon near the surface of the Earth, but most of that pool is not involved with rapid exchange with the atmosphere.

Carbon Dioxide
A naturally occurring gas, and also a by-product of burning fossil fuels and biomass, as well as land-use changes and other industrial processes. It is the principal human caused greenhouse gas that affects the Earth’s radiative balance. It is the reference gas against which other greenhouse gases are measured and therefore has a Global Warming Potential of 1. See climate change and global warming.

Carbon Dioxide Equivalent
A metric measure used to compare the emissions from various greenhouse gases based upon their global warming potential (GWP). Carbon dioxide equivalents are commonly expressed as “million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (MMTCO2Eq).” The carbon dioxide equivalent for a gas is derived by multiplying the tons of the gas by the associated GWP.

MMTCO2Eq = (million metric tons of a gas) * (GWP of the gas)

See greenhouse gas, global warming potential, metric ton.

Carbon Dioxide Fertilization
The enhancement of the growth of plants as a result of increased atmospheric CO2 concentration. Depending on their mechanism of photosynthesis, certain types of plants are more sensitive to changes in atmospheric CO2 concentration.[1]

Carbon Sequestration
Terrestrial, or biologic, carbon sequestration is the process by which trees and plants absorb carbon dioxide, release the oxygen, and store the carbon. Geologic sequestration is one step in the process of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), and involves injecting carbon dioxide deep underground where it stays permanently.

Carbon Capture and Sequestration
Carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) is a set of technologies that can greatly reduce carbon dioxide emissions from new and existing coal- and gas-fired power plants, industrial processes, and other stationary sources of carbon dioxide. It is a three-step process that includes capture of carbon dioxide from power plants or industrial sources; transport of the captured and compressed carbon dioxide (usually in pipelines); and underground injection and geologic sequestration, or permanent storage, of that carbon dioxide in rock formations that contain tiny openings or pores that trap and hold the carbon dioxide.

Chlorofluorocarbons
Gases covered under the 1987 Montreal Protocol and used for refrigeration, air conditioning, packaging, insulation, solvents, or aerosol propellants. Since they are not destroyed in the lower atmosphere, CFCs drift into the upper atmosphere where, given suitable conditions, they break down ozone. These gases are being replaced by other compounds: hydrochlorofluorocarbons, an interim replacement for CFCs that are also covered under the Montreal Protocol, and hydrofluorocarbons, which are covered under the Kyoto Protocol. All these substances are also greenhouse gases. See hydrochlorofluorocarbons, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, ozone depleting substance.

 

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Did you Know?

Among the key projects under the Kyoto protocol is the REDD programs. REDD stands for Reduction of Deforestation and forest Degradation.

Deforestation is simply cutting down of trees. This is either through logging or burning in a forest deliberately for mostly land-use or commercial purposes. forest degradation could be used to mean reduction of capacity of a forest to provide goods and/or services. this includes the services of any ecosystem, ie supporting, regulatory,provisioning, cultural.

trees are important carbon sinks. carbon sinks to mean they absorb carbon from the atmosphere hence decreasing its content.  hence the more trees there are, the lesser the carbon contents in the atmosphere hence the lesser the impacts of climate change. despite being a project in which people could benefit from carbon trading, to revive our own lands, rivers and even weather, how about planting a tree as often as possible. let us increase the tree cover in the country and rip our benefits

New fund to help Kenyan communities adapt to climate change

The government of Kenya will next week (29 October) launch a new fund to help communities in the north of the country adapt to climate change and other development challenges.

The Climate Adaptation Fund will disburse £500,000 (68.5 million shillings) over the next year in Isiolo County. If successful, the approach could be replicated in other counties of Kenya’s arid and semi-arid lands.

The fund will support ‘public good type’ activities that build community resilience to climate change. Communities in the five pilot wards can suggest proposals to the fund through their ward-level committee. A cross community/government committee at the county level will then assess these proposals.

Initial community suggestions have focused on improving natural resource management through building the capacity of customary institutions. As part of the fund, the launch of a county-wide community radio station also seeks to build resilience by delivering appropriate and accessible climate information to better inform local planning processes.

"For too long emergency responses to extreme weather events in the arid and semi-arid lands have deflected development resources from their proper purpose,” says Victor Orindi, climate change advisor to the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands Secretariat under the Ministry of Northern Kenya and Other Arid Lands. “To be effective, local planning now needs to integrate actions for climate resilience. Decentralisation under the new constitution allows this to happen based upon the knowledge of local people and planners.”

The Kenyan office of the UK Department for International Development has provided the finance via the UK International Climate Fund, and the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) has acted as a coordinator and advisor to the Kenyan government.

"This exciting pilot climate adaptation fund will address local development needs and climate vulnerabilities," says Simon Anderson, head of the climate change group at IIED.

"It seeks to empower local people and their institutions to build partnerships with local government, and capitalises on the strong constitutional mandate for community participation in management of natural resources for climate resilience," he adds.

Full details of the fund’s launch below.

When: 08:30-12:30 Monday 29 October

Where: Tented Conference Facility in Garbatula, Isiolo County

Speakers:

  • Minister Mohamed Elmi (Ministry of Northern Kenya and Other Arid Lands)
  • Daoud Tari (Coordinator- Resource Advocacy Programme)
  • Simon Anderson (IIED- Head of Climate Change Group)
  • Victor Orindi (Climate Change Advisor- Arid and Semi-Arid Lands Secretariat)
  • Benson Ochieng (Director- Institute for Law and Environmental Governance)

Contact:

Mike Shanahan
Press officer

International Institute for Environment and Development
80-86 Gray’s Inn Road
London WC1X 8NH, UK.
Tel: +44 (0)20 3463 7399
Fax: +44 (0)20 3514 9055

Email: mike.shanahan
www.iied.org

By kenyaclimategovernancenetwork Posted in News

Kenyan Climate Innovation Center Launched to Boost Green Technologies in Africa

The Climate Innovation Centre (CIC) is a pilot programme being supported by the World Bank, government of Denmark and UKAid.  It was launched yesterday, October 1st 2012.The CIC is an innovative model to accelerate locally owned, locally developed solutions to climate change. In addition to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving climate resiliency, it will accelerate business in high-growth sectors such as renewable energy, agriculture, clean water, and energy efficiency. The Kenya CIC will be seeded by a contribution of US$15 million over five years.

The CIC aims to help Kenya achieve a mix of economic, environmental and social results, including green jobs and the start up for green companies, reduced CO2 emissions and enhanced climate resilience, access to clean energy and water and strengthened technology and innovation capacity.

The establishment of the CIC is also in hope of transforming Kenya into a middle income country. The grouping of countries according to their income was developed by World Bank World Development Indicators. These countries lay within a certain range or a set of parameters (about $1,000 to $12,000 gross national income per person). Kenya is said to have the potential to move from a low income to a middle income country if its economy can increase at about 6% per year, according to World Bank. Some countries that fall into the middle income category include South Africa, Brazil and recently China.

We have to acknowledge the efforts being done by the World Bank and other donors in trying to encourage a green economy in Kenya. This is a good step towards the positive side and all we can hope is that the youth take advantage of such scenarios and build themselves into the entrepreneurs and leaders they can be.

For Climate Governance and Integrity Programme (CGIP), all we hope is that there will be transparent and accountable use of these funds that are being set aside for this project. Funds that are aimed for climate change projects have not been of focus to many people especially the public, yet they have a right to know how such funds are being used.

We hope that through this project, many success stories will emerge, as success stories act as motivators to other unsettled minds.

By kenyaclimategovernancenetwork Posted in News

Climate Change 101

In every aspect in life, definition of terms is important. Much may be said about climate change but without the basics, not much will get through. So what terms are often used in discussions concerning climate change?

Climate Change: Refers to any change in climate over time, whether due to natural variability or as a

result of human activity. (IPCC – Intergovernmental panel on Climate Change). In summary, the observed change in weather patterns, the extremes being observed in weather patterns all over the world could be described as climate change.

Climate variability refers to shorter term (daily, seasonal, annual, inter-annual, several years) variations in climate, including the fluctuations associated with El Niño (dry) or La Niña (wet) events.

Adaptation Practical steps to protect countries and communities from the likely disruption and damage

that will result from effects of climate change. For example, flood walls should be built and in numerous

cases it is probably advisable to move human settlements out of flood plains and other low-lying areas…”

(Website of the UNFCCC Secretariat)

Adaptation Benefits – The avoided damage costs or the accrued benefits following the adoption and

implementation of adaptation measures. (IPCC TAR)

Adaptation Costs – Costs of planning, preparing for, facilitating, and implementing adaptation measures,

including transition costs. (IPCC TAR)

Adaptive Capacity – The ability of a system to adjust to climate change (including climate variability and

extremes), to moderate potential damages, to take advantage of opportunities, or to cope with the

consequences. (IPCC TAR)

Coping Capacity – The means by which people or organizations use available resources and abilities to

face adverse consequences that could lead to a disaster. (In general, this involves managing resources,

both in normal times as well as during crises or adverse conditions. The strengthening of coping

capacities usually build resilience to withstand the effects of natural and human-induced hazards.)

(UN/ISDR)

Coping range – Is the range of climate where the outcomes are beneficial or negative but tolerable;

beyond the coping range, the damages or loss are no longer tolerable and a society (or a system) is said

to be vulnerable. (UNDP,

A Disaster –- Is a serious disruption of the functioning of a community or a society causing widespread

human, material, economic or environmental losses which exceed the ability of the affected community or

society to cope using its own resources. (UN/ISDR)

Resilience – Amount of change a system can undergo without changing state. (IPCC)

Vulnerability – The degree to which a system is susceptible to, or unable to cope with, adverse effects of

climate change, including climate variability and extremes. Vulnerability is a function of the character,

magnitude, and rate of climate variation to which a system is exposed, its sensitivity, and it’s adaptive

capacity. (IPCC)

 

By kenyaclimategovernancenetwork Posted in Reference

We are watching you!Right to Know

TI-Kenya commemorated the 10th International Right to Know day on 28th September 2012 at Young Women Christian Association in Nairobi. The event was graced by over 70 representatives of Universities ,Colleges and CSOs within Nairobi. Institutions represented included the Universities of Nairobi, Moi, Kenyatta, Bunge la Mwananchi, YMCA, YWCA, FEMNET, TI-Kenya among others. The “Dialogue” on a theme of Access to Information and Climate Governance saw contributions from the participants who hailed the event as an eye opener towards transparency and accountability.

There were very informative engagements on: the importance of access to information; avenues for accessing climate finance governance information; the existing challenges; instruments that are in place that can help in greater access to government held information and way forward. Most students agreed they had not heard about climate finance governance before and were shocked at environmental impacts that are likely to impact on the future generations. There were positive responses on joining the Climate Governance Network most participants committed to becoming active members and good-will ambassadors for the programme.

TI-Kenya staff took the opportunity to publicise the knowledge center by highlighting research facilities, opportunities and IEC materials that would be of help to the participants. Majority indicated having gone to resource centers within Nairobi only to be asked for a letter before entrance. They were however informed that TI-Kenya`s Knowledge center is Open to the Public Mondays to Fridays and is a one stop shop for governance, anti-corruption materials. They were also informed that referral services could be offered to them in-case the centre did not have sought for information.

On freedom of Information bill, there were exchanges on possibilities of effective advocacy campaigns and lobbying for the enactment of the bill. The participants also suggested that the advocacy campaigns be taken to the community level and information be broken down in a language that is understandable to all. Participants lauded the fact that TI-Kenya was in the process of collecting over petition signatures that would accelerate the enactment of the bill. Speaking during the event, Caroline Njuguna a Kenyatta University graduate remarked at the slow pace of enactment of access to information bill into law because majority of Kenyans did not know they had the Right to Know. She also pointed out that gender mainstreaming could be a viable option in advocacy and lobbying for women could steer the campaign to greater heights.

We are watching you!Right to Know

TI-Kenya commemorated the 10th International Right to Know day on 28th September 2012 at Young Women Christian Association in Nairobi. The event was graced by over 70 representatives of Universities ,Colleges and CSOs within Nairobi. Institutions represented included the Universities of Nairobi, Moi, Kenyatta, Bunge la Mwananchi, YMCA, YWCA, FEMNET, TI-Kenya among others. The “Dialogue” on a theme of Access to Information and Climate Governance saw contributions from the participants who hailed the event as an eye opener towards transparency and accountability.

There were very informative engagements on: the importance of access to information; avenues for accessing climate finance governance information; the existing challenges; instruments that are in place that can help in greater access to government held information and way forward. Most students agreed they had not heard about climate finance governance before and were shocked at environmental impacts that are likely to impact on the future generations. There were positive responses on joining the Climate Governance Network most participants committed to becoming active members and good-will ambassadors for the programme.

TI-Kenya staff took the opportunity to publicise the knowledge center by highlighting research facilities, opportunities and IEC materials that would be of help to the participants. Majority indicated having gone to resource centers within Nairobi only to be asked for a letter before entrance. They were however informed that TI-Kenya`s Knowledge center is Open to the Public Mondays to Fridays and is a one stop shop for governance, anti-corruption materials. They were also informed that referral services could be offered to them in-case the centre did not have sought for information.

On freedom of Information bill, there were exchanges on possibilities of effective advocacy campaigns and lobbying for the enactment of the bill. The participants also suggested that the advocacy campaigns be taken to the community level and information be broken down in a language that is understandable to all. Participants lauded the fact that TI-Kenya was in the process of collecting over petition signatures that would accelerate the enactment of the bill. Speaking during the event, Caroline Njuguna a Kenyatta University graduate remarked at the slow pace of enactment of access to information bill into law because majority of Kenyans did not know they had the Right to Know. She also pointed out that gender mainstreaming could be a viable option in advocacy and lobbying for women could steer the campaign to greater heights.

Climate change issues

Large Dams And Climate Crisis
CounterCurrents.org
Lori Pottinger mentions a bitter fact: “[A]cross the continent, large dams are being planned with no understanding of how a changing climate will affect them – and little attention to the related problem of how dams will hurt river-based communities
The Journey From High Schoolers To Climate Leaders In Two Semesters Or Less
ThinkProgress
School is back in session for high schools all across the country and the one thing on every student’s mind is, of course, climate change. OK, maybe in most schools who’s But as we, the Alliance for Climate Education (ACE), start back up, we’re
ThinkProgress
Four-degree rise demands 90-degree rethink
The Canberra Times
Few directors or executives are prepared to give serious attention to long-term issues such as climate change when their rewards are based almost entirely on short-term performance. Many privately agree that climate change needs far more urgent action

Regards

The Canberra Times

Jacob